Central Ohio Urology takes 1st spot at Gahanna tech park

Posted on September 2, 2011

Written by: Carrie Ghose

Published by: The Business Journals

A planned flagship operation for the largest urology practice in Central Ohio will be the first development at a technology park in an undeveloped corner of Gahanna until now marooned by Interstate 270.

The 26-doctor Central Ohio Urology Group Inc. plans to leave two leased spaces in Columbus to consolidate administrative staff, outpatient surgery operations and other services at an $8.5 million, 40,000-square-foot building taking up three of the first 12 acres Gahanna plans to open for development at the tech park. A $6.4 million bridge over I-270, expected to be finished in November, and an extension of Tech Center Drive are opening up 78 acres set to be rezoned for office and technology businesses. An additional 36 acres will be used to expand an adjoining city park.

A decade in the works, “this road is opening up previously inaccessible land for economic development,” said Anthony Jones, Gahanna’s planning and development director. “This is one of the last pieces of vacant land we have.”

Federal highway money paid for most of the extension, with $1.8 million from the city.

Efficiency, visibility

Central Ohio Urology is moving about 15 doctors and 70 employees, with a combined payroll of about $8 million, from leased offices on East Broad Street and at the Zangmeister Center, a physician-owned outpatient campus along I-670. It will move clerical staff to downsize a few of its 13 other satellite locations but not close them, said Lynn Miller, chief operating officer.

The practice will gain efficiency from being under the same roof and visibility from the highway, she said. It’s also down the road from the practice’s radiation treatment center for prostate cancer, which will not move.

“We can give more full service in one place,” Miller said.

Along with the new road, tech park occupants get access to the city’s broadband fiber-optic telecommunications network by New Albany-based Bluemile Inc.

“Broadband is critical to our operations,” Miller said, because doctors need to transmit electronic medical records between locations.

The practice is owned by its partner physicians, and some of them make up Eastside Urologic Center of Excellence LLC, which will own the real estate.

Medical development

As well as creating a tax-increment financing district to capture property taxes for infrastructure, the city has recommended a 25 percent, four-year income tax rebate that would repay the practice about $123,000, while Gahanna expects income taxes exceeding $1 million over 10 years. City Council is expected to vote on the zoning change Sept. 6, with votes on the design and incentive package later in the month.

The Zangmeister Center, primarily focused on outpatient cancer care, is marketing the space to surgical groups with a planned switch by early 2013, Executive Director Glenn Balasky said. Separately, physical therapy group Accelerated Medical will become a tenant in a 2,500-squarefoot suite in mid-September.

Central Ohio Urology’s plans follow the recent disclosure of a $4 million, 20,000-square-foot consolidation and expansion of Westerville offices for Cardinal Orthopaedic Institute.

No building happens anymore without an anchor tenant, said Tim Spencer, president of Columbus-based Trivium Development LLC, which is building the urology headquarters. The architect is Dublin-based Andrews Architects Inc., a health-care specialist that also designed Cardinal Orthopaedic and the Zangmeister.

“To have a tenant with good-quality credit,” Spencer said, “is how the market is going to

Carrie Ghose covers health care and medicine, higher education, technology and
business services for Business First.