U of Iowa breaks ground on $395M hospital campus

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The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics broke ground Oct. 14 on its hospital campus in North Liberty, Iowa, according to The Gazette.

The hospital system last month received approval from the Iowa Board of Regents to build the campus, which has a total project budget of $395 million. The budget includes a $230 million, 300,000-square-foot hospital and $165 million academic building.

The 300,000-square-foot hospital will house 48 beds, 21 emergency care rooms, 16 operating rooms and two additional procedure rooms. It also will offer laboratory services, pharmacy services and other amenities.

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics also plans to construct a 169,000-square-foot academic and clinical building. It will house outpatient clinics, faculty offices and research spaces.

Several local healthcare systems, including Mercy Iowa City, Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids and UnityPoint Health, unsuccessfully opposed the project. The health systems argued that the North Liberty campus is a costly project that would add duplicative services to the region.

"We're already digging. As you can see, we don't waste any time," U of Iowa President Barbara Wilson, PhD, told the crowd at the groundbreaking ceremony, according to The Gazette. "This was green a couple of weeks ago, and now it's mud. And we're really excited about that."

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