After years of discussion and debate, plans are coalescing to build the Richmond region’s first independent, free-standing children’s hospital. But where will it go?
Speculation is building about the likely location, with nearly every locality in the metro area vying for the project.
The answer could come as early as June, says Katherine Busser, the chief executive of the Virginia Children’s Hospital Alliance, according to recent reports.
Busser didn’t return repeated requests for comment on the status of the project, but she addressed the Tri Club Woman’s Club last month, saying that Richmond, Chesterfield, Henrico and Goochland all have proposals on the table, according to the Henrico Citizen.
In Henrico, the group is considering the old Best Products headquarters at Interstate 95 and Parham Road, Busser said. In Chesterfield, an area in the vicinity of Chippenham is under consideration.
The City of Richmond has submitted a proposal to place the hospital on the Boulevard. If that area is chosen, it would serve as Mayor Dwight Jones’ best chance to reintroduce his long-stalled proposal to demolish The Diamond and build a baseball stadium in Shockoe Bottom.
City officials are reticent to discuss the proposal for fear of jeopardizing their chances of winning the project. When Style reported that the stadium and hospital plans had become intertwined, local billionaire Bill Goodwin, who’s pledged $150 million to help fund the project, responded: “I just think that it’s totally inappropriate to put any of them together,” he said. “It’s two separate things. One has nothing to do with the other.”