The new 635,000-square-foot, $380 million Nemours Children's Hospital is on a 60-acre campus and is set to open next year with 95 beds but room for up to 139.
Ground was broken in October for the University of Florida Research and Academic Center, a $44 million, 100,000-square-foot facility that is expected to be completed next summer and include a pharmacy college, a research unit of the school's Institute on Aging and a drug development institute. Medical City faced one of its first setbacks when Gov. Rick Scott erased $6 million in funding for the UF facility that the Legislature had approved, but Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer doesn't expect the cut to delay construction.
“We can all agree the Medical City would have benefitted from the $6 million that was appropriated for the University of Florida project,” Dyer says in an e-mail. “Fortunately, due to other funding sources and the incredible synergy and support at Medical City, the project's construction will not be stalled or delayed.”
About 400 people work in Medical City facilities now, DeVault says. But after the VA and Nemours hospitals open next year, that figure will jump to 4,000. By 2017, Medical City is expected to employ 30,000 people and generate $7.6 billion in annual economic activity.
It is expected to spur more residential and commercial development as well as help anchor Orlando as the nation's No. 1 destination for medical conferences. According to DeVault, the city has held that position for some 12 years, and Dyer expects that to continue.
“During the next 35 years, the Medical City will grow to be the nation's crossroads of medical research and innovation and will define Orlando as one of the world's greatest medical destinations with a unique mix of residential, business and education,” Dyer says. “The Medical City will be a place where answers to some of medicine's most complicated questions are revealed.”