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Society

Henry Ford Health, Tom Gores & Pistons, & MSU $2.5B Plans for Detroit’s New Center

February 10, 2023

DETROIT, MI – A sweeping community development sponsored by Henry Ford Health, Greek-American Tom Gores and the Detroit Pistons, and Michigan State University intends to invest $2.5 billion over the next decade to turn Detroit’s New Center neighborhood into a vibrant, walkable community with state-of-the-art residential, commercial, retail, recreational and health care components, according to a February 8 news release from Henry Ford Health.

The development will be anchored by a reimagined Henry Ford Health academic healthcare campus, the highlight of which is a major expansion of Henry Ford Hospital including a brand new one-million-square-foot plus facility and patient tower. It also includes a new, cutting-edge medical research facility for Henry Ford Health + Michigan State University Health Sciences, part of Henry Ford Health’s 30-year partnership with Michigan State University.

The plan includes a significant expansion of the partnership between Henry Ford Health and Gores and the Detroit Pistons, who joined on a $137 million facility in 2019 that relocated the Pistons franchise back to Detroit and into the new Henry Ford Detroit Pistons Performance Center and Center for Athletic Medicine on Second Avenue adjacent to New Center.

“When we acquired the Pistons more than a decade ago, our vision was larger than simply owning an NBA basketball franchise,” Gores said. “I viewed this from the start as a ‘community asset’ that was uniquely positioned to participate in the continuing reinvention of Detroit and to be impactful in the lives of its residents.”

“Our plan in Detroit has focused on bringing people and organizations together and creating meaningful partnerships that accelerate growth, create opportunity and contribute to the revitalization of the city,” he said. “We are uniquely positioned and fortunate to have our partners at Henry Ford Health support the re-imagination of our shared neighborhood, which will create jobs and housing for a new generation of Detroiters.”
Gores praised the Henry Ford Health team, notably President and CEO Robert G. Riney: “Bob is a passionate leader who has devoted his career to serving the health of the Detroit community, and I look forward to working together to bring our shared vision to reality.”

The development will include new residential, retail and community space (left) next to the existing Detroit Pistons Performance Center and new joint medical research facility (behind the new residential building) for the Henry Ford Health-Michigan State University Health Sciences partnership. Photo: Henry Ford Health Facebook page

Riney said the power of partnership is vital in redefining and rebuilding neighborhoods across Detroit.

“The re-imagination of our healthcare campus in Detroit has been a long-held vision for us and we’ve taken exceptional pride in challenging ourselves – a quest to discover what’s truly possible alongside our partners,” Riney said. “We’ve welcomed Tom Gores’ ‘big thinking’ approach since the very start of our partnership. He’s a great catalyst in stretching people’s expectations and aspirations, and has really helped us drive a common mission and vision that will help us create something truly transformative for our patients and families, our communities, as well as the best team in healthcare.”

Riney said the hospital component alone will represent the largest single healthcare investment in the city of Detroit in the health system’s history. Renderings shared today detail the initial conceptual areas of focus for future development in creating a unique destination to live, work and play in a community that supports tomorrow’s healthcare advances, drives economic growth and inclusion, and provides a new welcoming and accessible urban environment.

“Like all major U.S. cities, our great city of Detroit deserves a premier academic medical center and destination for the most advanced care, research and education,” Riney said. “As an anchor institution that’s been committed to building strong, healthy communities for more than a century, we know we can deliver on that promise – to double down on our commitment to being relentless advocates for those we serve.
“That includes not only charting a path to lead the healthcare of tomorrow, but also working alongside our partners to create vibrant and thriving neighborhoods, foster opportunities for growth and success, and remove barriers to wellness – particularly in our underserved populations.”

“The health system expects the research center to ‘attract worldwide attention to the work we’ll be doing,’” Greek-American Dr. Steven Kalkanis, Henry Ford Health’s chief academic health officer, told The Detroit News (TDN).

“The research building will bring together basic translational, clinical research, clinical trials, precision medicine, artificial intelligence and machine learning and population health research ‘to change how health care is delivered not just here, but everywhere,’” Dr. Kalkanis said, TDN reported.

“The building will house multiple shared research efforts like cancer and health disparities research, and it will fuel discovery through an integrated partnership of buyers, academics, scientists and public health practitioners,” Dr. Kalkanis told TDN.

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