Vanderbilt plans mammoth Cool Springs project

Outpatient complex could grow larger than 100 Oaks venture, cost $200M

Vanderbilt University Medical Center is planning to build an outpatient medical office complex in Cool Springs that could eventually take up 500,000 square feet and cost $200 million.

The Nashville academic medical center is in the early planning stages of the project to consolidate some of its Williamson County outposts, said Deputy Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs Wright Pinson. It recently closed on its purchase of 22 acres of land at McEwen Drive and Carothers Parkway for $5.1 million.

“We’re currently just finishing purchasing this property,” he said, “So we have not actually gotten very far down in the program development planning statements. We are busy right now trying to figure out exactly who’s going to go in there and what they’re going to need.”

In its initial phase, Pinson said the project should be about 200,000 square feet and cost about $60 million. It would open by 2014. In the future, if demand warrants it, the project could expand to 500,000 square feet at a cost of $200 million.

By comparison, Vanderbilt Health's successful complex at 100 Oaks takes up 440,000 square feet of space of the renovated shopping center. The cluster houses clinics and services ranging from dermatology to pediatric allergy to surgical weight loss.

Getting to 500,000 square feet in Cool Springs, Pinson said, is “a long way away.” After 12 years of being in Williamson County, the medical center’s providers occupy just 225,000 total square feet. He also noted that the medical center may opt to hire a developer to build the facility and then lease it back from them.

Vanderbilt currently has about 130 providers in about 15 different office spaces in Williamson County. Pinson said only specialty practices — such as cardiology, oncology and dermatology — would move into the space. Primary care doctors would not be affected by the move.

Pinson also said the facility is in no way intended to compete with nearby Williamson Medical Center, to which many of its doctors admit their patients.

Williamson Medical spokeswoman Mandy Rogers said the hospital administration was informed of Vanderbilt’s plans in advance but that the hospital is in no way involved with the project.

“We really do have a good working relationship with Vanderbilt,” Rogers said.