Governor Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet today approved a 2-acre transfer of land from the state to the University of South Florida and All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg. This land transfer will enable the hospital to construct a 300,000 square-foot facility, generating 400 jobs and creating a research, training and educational center to better care for pediatric patients.
Governor Rick Scott said, "The transfer of the two acres of land to the University of South Florida and All Children's Hospital is great news for Florida families. As a father and grandfather, I know how important it is to meet the health care needs of our children. We are happy to support All Children's Hospital for the work they do to care for our youngest patients. This land transfer will enable the hospital to create jobs, conduct research and better serve their patients."
The Hospital reports that construction of the new facility will provide an economic boost to the local economy because the cost of construction will be between $65-$85 million and generate approximately 400 design and construction jobs. Once complete, the hospital plans to hire approximately 15 new research staff and six faculty positions with an average annual salary between $90,000 and $150,000. The facility is expected to house 40 research professionals including doctorate and post doctorate positions.
The new facility will be constructed on two vacant lots and used for a medical education and research center associated with the University of South Florida and the hospital. The facility will continue the public-private collaboration between the University of South Florida and the hospital to allow for joint research to combat childhood diseases and develop specific treatments with a focus on pediatric brain health, neuroscience, early brain development, memory and behavioral health.
Florida Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Herschel T. Vinyard Jr. said, "This is a wonderful opportunity for DEP's Division of State Lands to transfer land that will do so much good for Florida families. I appreciate Governor Scott and the Florida Cabinet's willingness to use state-owned land in order to fulfill the scientific and medical research necessary to help our children."
USF President Judy Genshaft said, "We appreciate all the support that Governor Scott, the members of the Florida Cabinet, Speaker Will Weatherford and the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation have provided for this project. Thanks to their efforts, the strong partnership that exists today between USF and All Children's Hospital will continue to grow and together we will discover better and more effective treatments and cures for childhood illnesses in these state-of-the-art research facilities."
The Florida Cabinet voted unanimously to approve the transfer of three parcels of land, totaling 2.02 acres, to the University of South Florida with a deadline to transfer ownership to the hospital by June 30, 2014. Under the terms of the transfer, construction must commence within 10 years of the date of the deed between the university and hospital.