Groundwork for Lackawanna County’s newest hospital is underway, even if some particulars on what will be there remain foggy.
Demolition crews have leveled a former strip mall on Main Street and a building that once housed Michael Griffin’s insurance agency.
A mostly blank slate of torn-up earth remains where Lehigh Valley-based Coordinated Health plans to build a new hospital.
Only PA Escape Rooms stands, and owners of the entertainment venue — where paying guests work through a number of storylines, completing puzzles to move along each narrative — have said they plan to ride out their lease.
PA Escape officials didn’t return requests for comment, but back in April partner Mike Heffner lamented the notice to vacate his company received and said moving the elaborate sets inside his business would cost a small fortune. The lease ends in February.
Griffin moved his insurance agency across Main Street and is now down on the south side of Viewmont Drive.
Coordinated plans a hospital comparable to those it has in Bethlehem and Allentown, a spokeswoman said, though the company has not released details on the full scope of what’s planned for Dickson City — for example, whether the hospital will include an emergency room.
Coordinated will hold a groundbreaking event at 2 p.m. on Jan. 24 near the construction site where health system officials will then be ready to explain more details on service lines, spokeswoman Florence Brown said last week.
The physician-owned health system specializes in orthopedic care, such as joint replacement and spine surgery, but offers other service lines at its hospitals. Coordinated is building a $15 million walk-in clinic and ambulatory surgery center in Humboldt Station, Hazle Twp., and already has medical offices there and in Pittston Twp.
Coordinated acquired Scranton Orthopaedic Specialists in 2017 and began buying property surrounding the existing outpatient facility.
In all, the for-profit system’s property management affiliate, 334 Main LP, spent $7.4 million on the insurance agency, the PA Escape building, Scranton Orthopaedic’s building and the shopping plaza in 2017-18, according to county property records.
Plans show the new hospital connected to the existing outpatient medical office building, now home to Coordinated Health Scranton Orthopedics, an injury center and walk-in clinic and other outpatient services.
While the breadth of other services remains to be seen, the hospital will give a big boost to Coordinated’s forte, orthopedic surgery, bringing where doctors see patients and where they treat them under one roof.
“The property currently is home to a medical office building where surgical procedures are not performed; it’s just a typical office,” Brown said. “But the hospital will allow us to provide actual surgical procedures on the same campus.”