CHESHIRE – A development company that recently proposed an expansive new medical facility in the northern end of town will receive some economic incentives from the town if the project becomes a reality.
At the most recent Town Council meeting, town Economic Development Coordinator Gerry Sitko informed the council that Cheshire Surgery Center Realty LLC has requested incentive assistance for a 75,000-square-foot medical/office building and surgical center that is proposed to be built at 759 West Johnson Ave., on approximately 27 acres owned by FIP Construction.
“This surgery center will essentially take up the last space available on the north end. The applicant expects to have 175 full time and 50 part time employees,” Sitko said during the Jan. 14 meeting. “(The group) has 14 medical/office facilities in Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. The location that is currently in Southington will close and then utilize the new Cheshire office.”
Sitko went on to explain how the incentives would help the new business and Cheshire.
“The economic incentive to the company is about $900,000, and the project will generate about the same in taxes ... personal property taxes will generate $500,000 in revenue,” he said. “This request is consistent with the incentive policy as approved by the Council in the past, and has the support of the Economic Development Commission.”
The new surgery center, if approved by local boards, will be a Hartford Hospital affiliate and plans to hire approximately 125 full-time employees at first, and then increase to 175 employees as construction on the building continues.
After the presentation, Town Council Chairman Rob Oris took the opportunity to address an issue that he believes is arising in town, and being driven by social media.
“I have heard a lot of chatter over the past few weeks online that people are saying, ‘Oh look, another medical building,”’ Oris said. “My opinion is that this is great, upward growth. If we want growth, then we need things like this. I welcome projects like this.
“This project will provide top medical services for the community while generating grand list growth,” he added. “We can’t generate demand, and when you are throwing around words on Facebook, understand that we [the Council] don’t control everything.”
After Sitko’s presentation, the Tax Assessment Incentive was passed unanimously.