NMU Foundation, UPHS-Marquette talk future of hospital tract

It’s taken a couple of years but it appears that UP Health System-Marquette and Northern Michigan University are seriously looking at what can be done with the former hospital property that sits adjacent to NMU.

It was announced last week that the NMU Foundation is working with UPHS-Marquette and other partners toward the development.

“We are collectively working with UPHS-M and the city of Marquette, Marquette County and private sector partners to conduct due diligence on the viability of a partnership that would result in a transformational and mutually beneficial outcome for our community and Northern Michigan University,” the university said in a statement.

Noted UPHS-M: “All along, our goal has been to identify the right organization to redevelop this property in the best interest of the surrounding neighborhoods and the community we serve — and we look forward to seeing this campus revitalized.”

Local residents should view all of this as good news. We can think of few things worse for the former medical campus than simply letting it fall into disrepair over time.

We would caution, however, that it’s in all likelihood going to take some time for NMU to figure out potential uses, and then funding sources to implement whatever plans are settled upon.

And speaking of money, the Marquette Brownfield Redevelopment Authority has agreed to allocate up to $52,900 from the Local Brownfield Revolving Fund to the foundation for activities such as due diligence — or evaluation — and predemolition surveys, among other actions.

And local developers the Veridea Group is also involved on a contractual basis. Veridea backed out of a purchase agreement for the property in 2019, after its research found what it termed “significant issues.”

Additionally, Veridea apparently isn’t charging for its involvement in this new effort.

These are small first steps but steps nonetheless. We are pleased to see forward movement on this site and look forward to what comes next.


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