New Medical Building Could Bring Renewed Life to Tradition’s Center for Innovation

PORT ST. LUCIE — A new health-care building to rise in the Tradition Center for Innovation could breathe new life into the area’s research cluster, still on life support from the collapse of the Vaccine & Gene Therapy Institute of Florida.

Tradition Health Park — a $17 million, 65,000-square-foot medical office north of Tradition Medical Center is slated for construction early next year, with completion in early 2017. The property is owned by Trad Health, an entity owned and managed by Optimal Outcomes, a medical-office and health-care-development company with more than 1 million square feet of health-care developments across the county.

The three-story building will be north of Mann Medical One, a 41,750-square-foot, medical building also owned by Optimal Outcomes and connected to Tradition Medical Center. Tenants in Mann One include Florida Vision Institute, Visiting Nurse Association of Florida, RAPS Acquisition Holdings LLC and Premier Wellness Centers LLC.

The new building will meet the demand for similar providers, Optimal representative Andy Favata said.

“The addition of a second medical office building will attempt to meet the needs of physicians, surgery groups and other health-care-related companies who have continued to overwhelmingly demand new space adjacent to Tradition Medical Center,” Favata said in an email.

The building will provide a big boost to Innovation Way, which recently lost VGTI, and still has the struggling Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies, Mayor Greg Oravec said.

“They’re going to bring in doctors and other medical-industry-related users, and they’re going to put a lot of people to work,” Oravec said. “And those jobs pay more.”

Favata estimated construction will generate 150 jobs. The building, once completed, will attract 250 full-time jobs.

Tradition Medical Center, which earlier this year announced a $110 million expansion to add three stories and double its occupancy, employs approximately 600. The hospital will add about 500 jobs over the next two to three years as the expansion reaches its 2018 completion.

Adding further to the positive prognosis of Innovation Way is the future addition of a $14 million, 74,000-square-foot Keiser University campus. Groundbreaking and completion dates have not yet been announced.

By Nicole Rodriguez of TCPalm Dec. 28, 2015