November 4, 2013
TACOMA, Wash. – The Hilltop Regional Health Center hosted a well attended Grand Opening Celebration at the new facility on Saturday November 2. Attendees included Senator Maria Cantwell, Congressman Derek Kilmer, former Senator Debbie Regala, former Congressman Norm Dicks as well as project supporters, investors and partners.
The Hilltop Regional Health Center will serve six times as many patients as the old clinic on South “I” and 11th streets; as is the case today the majority will be low-income and uninsured. The new health center, with medical, dental and pharmacy, each with multi-lingual staff, will open its door to patients in late November.
The opening of the Hilltop Regional Health Center is a major milestone, and an extension of the 45-year history that Community Health Care has in the Hilltop Community. Founded in 1968 as a once-a-week clinic serviced by volunteer doctors from Pierce County, it has grown into a system of five medical and three dental clinics that served over 31,000 residents across Pierce County in 2012. From its inception, Dr. George Tanbara, one of the founders has been a quiet guiding influence for this important Pierce County safety net which continues to this day.
This will also be the first major new construction in the central area of Martin Luther King, Jr. Way in some time. The Hilltop Business Association anticipates that this construction will spur further new development on the MLK corridor in the near future.
The new 54,000 sq. ft. three-story facility and adjacent parking garage were constructed at a cost of $26.7 million. The project is being underwritten by individual gifts, foundations and businesses as well as grants from federal, state and city governments. It is further underwritten by over $7 million in equity through the New Market Tax Credits program which was supported by the National Development Council, Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF) and U.S. Bank/USBCDE. US Bank is the tax credit investor. When fully operational, the new health center will accommodate 17,000 patients annually.
The center will also be a teaching health center that will house residency programs for physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners, physician’s assistants and pharmacists, as well as training programs for other health disciplines. It will be one of the few locations in the United States to have the interaction of these multiple residencies in one location.
New as well, is a 15 room Urgent Care Clinic to serve immediate needs that do not require “Emergency” care facilities. Hours will extend into the evening and weekends.
About Hilltop Regional Health Center-
Hilltop Regional Health Center in Tacoma provides primary medical,dental and supportive health care services to low income and uninsured patients. The project involved the new construction of a 59,100 sq. ft. health care facility.It also included the construction of a parking structure adjacent to the center that provides 250 parking spaces for clinic staff and patients. The facility is located in a low – income, medically underserved neighborhood with a poverty rate of 40.8%, median family income of 48.1% and unemployment rate of 2.45 times the national average
NDC’s $10 million Qualified New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Equity Investment in the $26.7 million project was combined with financing from US Bank. Additional NMTC allocation provided by US Bancorp CDC and the Low Income Investment Fund, resulting in the creation of 60 construction jobs and 86 permanent jobs.