Houston: Texas A&M System Embarks on $546 Million Medical Center
Feature Illustration (above): Aerial perspective at night of the proposed Texas A&M University medical towers in Houston’s Texas Medical Center district. Courtesy: TAMU System.
by Eileen Pace
Houston (Harris County) — Texas A&M University System is about to break ground this spring on a $546 million complex in the Texas Medical Center that will provide medical education and housing for the university’s medical and nursing students.
The investment includes $401 million in private sector funding by American Triple I Partners to build two new towers. Another $145 million is being invested in the purchase and renovation of an 18-story building.
Concept view of the proposed TAMU medical towers, as seen from a nearby upper story balcony. Courtesy: TAMU System.
The expansion project is the largest in the Texas Medical Center and possibly the most massive in Houston’s recent history. It includes three major projects, two of which will be built through public-private partnerships, or P3s.
Three Major Projects:
Renovation of an 18-story building at 1020 Holcombe Blvd for students in the Engineering Medicine (EnMed) two-degree program, which will offer a master’s degree in engineering along with a medical doctor’s degree. The building sits on a 5.5-acre tract near Main Street, which Texas A&M purchased in 2017. Completion is expected by this summer.
A P3 project – a 19-story, 365,000-square-foot student housing building with a capacity for 704 beds in 572 units. The facility includes a 1.2 million square-foot parking garage with 3,444 parking spaces. Completion is expected in June, 2022.
Also a P3 new construction project, the 30-story Integrated Medical Plaza will be a medical office building with 587,000 square feet and a 13-story parking garage. The multi-use building will incorporate 72-thousand square feet of retail space and 8,700 square feet of green space. Completion is projected for June, 2023.
According to Texas A&M’s newsletter, the EnMed concept is new for the Texas Medical Center, one where students will research new ways to solve complicated medical problems. Students will complete their master’s degrees in engineering and doctorates of medicine, while also being required to invent new medical devices or processes as part of their studies.
“Texas A&M’s rise in prominence — especially within the health care arena — is reflected with the aggressive expansion of properties near the Texas Medical Center,” Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp said in a Feb. 20 news release. “The Houston medical scene is about to see the benefits of Aggie ingenuity and our dedication to service.”
American Triple I Partners, founded by Texas A&M alum Henry Cisneros, is part of the financing team.
The developer for the P3 projects is Medistar Corporation, whose CEO is Monzer Hourani. Medistar also developed the InterContinental Houston-Medical Center, the first luxury hotel built in the Texas Medical Center in decades, according to a story in the Houston Business Journal. The hotel opened in 2019.
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