Medical Plaza May Be Bought for Police Substation

The city has tentatively agreed to purchase the three-story Anaheim Memorial Medical Plaza for $6.4 million to house a police substation and other community services for east side residents.

The city is buying the 47,328-square-foot building from Anaheim Memorial Medical Center, subject to approval from homeowners in three assessment districts. The homeowners must vote to redirect funds already collected for public improvement projects.

The sale is expected to be completed in October, said Michael Carter, the hospital chief executive.

"The idea [in building the medical complex] was that we'd be able to expand our hospital's presence in the eastern part of Anaheim," Carter said. "It just didn't work."

At most, the 6-year-old building on 6 acres has been only 40% occupied. Now, only a small number of employees and five affiliated doctors work there.

City officials, on the other hand, have needed a large facility for city services. They had planned on building a police station and community center nearby, but the cost was too high.

The availability of the medical center came at the right time, City Manager James D. Ruth said, and it helped that about 900 residents already were using a community room donated by the hospital as a meeting area.

"We just do not have enough places for people to meet in that area," he said. "By acquiring the property, we can protect community use of that facility and expand on it."

Under terms of the agreement, the city would fund $1 million, redirecting city funds earmarked for the construction project. Developers' fees would pay for $375,000. The remainder would come from the funds in the three assessment districts.

The City Council set a July 14 public hearing on the plan.

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