Patience needed for Atrium’s new hospital

Planned Atrium Health hospital in Cornelius

Dec. 22  By Dave Vieser. It was three years ago–almost to the day—when we broke the news that Atrium Health was planning a 30-bed acute care hospital in Cornelius. Atrium, which purchased the Augustalee site on Hwy. 21, actually planned a major medical development with a hospital and adjacent medical offices. Atrium confirmed the plan for the  Cornelius facility at that time and said, if approved by the state, it would open in early 2023.

That 2023 opening appears undoable, based on progress to date. Initially, the timeline for the hospital opening was delayed when the state rejected the original Certificate of Need (CON), a state-level regulation that prevents duplication in the hospital business.

Traffic study back-up

Although it was eventually approved, the CON pushed the entire process back. Then, too, the required traffic impact analysis (TIA) was only recently completed according to Deputy Town Manager Wayne Herron.

“Our code stipulates that Atrium cannot move its application for rezoning to the Planning Board or the Town Board until the TIA is completed and approved by NCDOT,” Herron explained.

The TIA is a complex document prepared by an engineering firm which explores all aspects of traffic that will be generated by the  project. Stantec Engineering of Charlotte performed the task for the new hospital to the tune of $82,500, all paid for by Atrium.

With the TiA done, a lengthy series of public hearings will commence, involving the town Architectural Review Board and Planning Board, as well as the full Town Board. Atrium will also be required to conduct a community meeting prior to the hearings.

How long could this take?

Previous projections on when the hospital would open ranged between 2023 and 2024, but even 2024 seems optimistic at this point.

Hospital officials said they did not know when the opening would occur, let alone ground-breaking.

When it does open, the new facility on the west of side of Hwy. 21 near Bailey Road will have 30 beds. Eight will be observation beds, four will be designated Intensive Care, and the remainder will be medical/surgical beds. There will be two operating rooms in the new hospital, along with other rooms for procedures, tests and lab work.

There will also be a helipad on the new hospital property.


2 Responses to “Patience needed for Atrium’s new hospital”

  1. It is ridiculous that they are building a hospital right on top of 2 residential neighborhoods. It is a known fact that hospitals bring in more crime.

    There is a hospital just down the road in Huntersville and another at Exit 33.

    In typical fashion, the Town of Cornelius DOES NOT CARE about its residents and their peace, security, and well-being. It is all about lining their pockets with money under the table and, for greed.

    Posted by DED | December 22, 2022, 3:00 pm
    • Well DED if crime is up it is only within the hospital’s themselves. How will that affect the general public outside of the hospital? As far as the two neighborhoods are concerned they are a good distance from that location. As far as greed it sounds like you do not care about what goes into that space. You are just anti everything. Move if you are that mad.

      Posted by Richard Stilwell | December 22, 2022, 7:04 pm

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