September Board & Investor-Member Meeting Highlights

Thursday, October 10, 2019

On Thursday, September 5 at the Holiday Inn & Suites in downtown Duluth, APEX Board of Directors and investor-members had the opportunity to learn more about Essentia Health’s Vision Northland Initiative at their bi-monthly meeting. Mark Hayward, Senior Vice President of Operations at Essentia Health, presented project development updates and visuals regarding the $800 million project – which is the largest private investment in Duluth’s history.

The three-year construction project will completely transform the Essentia campus and Duluth’s Medical District. Investment in a new hospital bed tower, clinic space and surgical suites are the forefront of the project. The economic impact of the construction project will surely spur additional investment in the community as well.

Highlights of the project include:

  • $800 million investment
  • Over 5,600 on-site construction jobs 
  • 3,600 off-site construction-related jobs 
  • 800,000 square feet of new space, 120,000 square feet of renovated space and 130,000 square feet of shelled space
  • All hospital rooms will be private (with the exception of neonatal rooms prepared for twin deliveries)

Essentia has been committed to transparency and involvement with the Essentia staff and the local community. More than 20 user groups have been conducted to engage staff through virtual reality and full-size room mockups, to plan for efficient and user-friendly design. Hayward also discussed the innovative glass design the organization has selected to minimize the impact on birds. They have partnered with Hawk’s Ridge on a study to understand more about the impact of the new construction on migration patterns.

“Partnerships have been an essential component of the project. Our construction, design, elected officials, education and building trades partners have all expressed outstanding support of Vision Northland,” stated Hayward. Several APEX investor-members were mentioned as playing a critical role in the project including McGoughLHB, and the Duluth Airport Authority.

“It’s an exciting time for the state of healthcare in our APEX region,” offered Brian Hanson, APEX President and CEO. “Between this project and the expansion down the street at St. Luke's, our community will continue to have access to the most innovative healthcare in the world."

Brian Hanson, APEX CEO and President (left), pictured with Essentia Health Senior Vice President of Operations, Mark Hayward (middle), and APEX Chairman of the Board and CEO of National Bank of Commerce, Steve Burgess (right).

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