Sentara breaks ground on new campus in Elizabeth City

Published 8:41 am Sunday, October 17, 2021

Sentara Healthcare has broken ground on its new Sentara Albemarle Regional Health Campus. The first phase is a new two-story 60,000 square foot medical office building slated to open in 2022, to be followed later by an 80-bed hospital in 2024. The new hospital will replace the current 60-year-old facility on North Road Street. The 135-acre campus at Halstead Boulevard Extended and Thunder Road will also set aside three acres for a new headquarters building for the Pasquotank/Camden EMS.

“The investment in this new health campus is tangible evidence of Sentara’s commitment to serve this community for the long-haul and to continue our mission to improve health every day,” said Phillip Jackson, president of Sentara Albemarle Medical Center, in prepared remarks.  “It will be an attractive place for patients to receive state-of-the-art care in their own community and to help keep our patients as healthy as they can be, so they don’t need to be in the hospital.”

The replacement hospital, designed by Innovate Architecture of Norfolk, will feature a high-efficiency, patient-centric layout representing the trend toward preventive care, outpatient services using remote technologies and minimal hospital stays, Jackson continued. “This approach to care is turning out to be better for our patients, who enjoy better outcomes, and it helps bend the cost curve downward,” he added.

Sentara and Pasquotank County previously announced a settlement plan for Sentara’s 30-year lease on the current county-owned hospital. Sentara took over operations in March 2014 after winning a public bidding process. As part of the lease settlement, Sentara will place $38M in an escrow account until the new hospital is open and operating.

“I’m thankful to be standing in this corn field today,” said Lloyd Griffin, chair of the Pasquotank County Board of Commissioners. “We have something to give back to the community. This will be a footprint for Sentara and I’m glad to be partners with you all.”

After the move to the new hospital and completion of the lease settlement, Pasquotank County will retain ownership of the current hospital site and will consider redevelopment options along the Road Street Corridor.

“As they grow, so will our city,” said Elizabeth City Mayor Bettie J. Parker of Sentara in the region. “This validates my decision in 2014 to support Sentara taking over the hospital, and I’m super excited about your decision to build this facility.”

The new health campus, projected to cost approximately $158 million, is also the first large-scale application of the Sentara commitment to diversify its supply chain activities. The initiative is designed to help small, local businesses owned by women, minorities and veterans gain access to the Sentara bidding process, so they can help develop the campus and service it long-term. Primary contractor Whiting-Turner has partnered with Elizabeth City State University’s Small Business Technology Development Center and Sentara Supply Chain leaders to help small businesses qualify to bid – and bid successfully – to participate in the broad-based economic activity the new campus will generate.

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