Sticky: Adjacent Property to Provide Mixed Services for Hospital

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Published on July 21, 2010 with No Comments

For most, the word “campus” still conjures up images of a university, college, or school setting. Somewhere in the past 20 or so years, however, the terms “office campus” and “hospital campus” have entered our lexicon. Now, as Porter Health System constructs its new hospital campus, another kind of campus is proposed to enhance and expand that site—Porter County’s first medical campus complete with a senior living campus.

Patrick Kleihege, principal partner of St. Andrews LLC, proposes to develop Porter Medical Campus and Senior Living Community on his 106-acre tract adjacent to the hospital grounds. As new hospitals now typically incorporate campuses, developing the property to provide as many attractive and convenient supportive services as possible for hospital visitors, staff, and patients made sense. And, given an aging population increasingly in need of both health care and maintenance-free living, the senior living campus seemed a natural complement to the entire project.

Over the last ten years, Kleihege has developed residential subdivisions in Porter County, including Audubon Estates, Pine Creek, Audubon Villas, Troon, and Trail Creek. He is collaborating with Lannert Group of Geneva, Illinois, experienced hospital campus planners, to develop this property into a pedestrian and bike friendly environment that boasts businesses, varied lifestyle opportunities, boulevards, and at least 18 acres of open space.

Contingent on re-zoning, Kleihege’s plan calls for the property’s frontage along U.S. 6 to accommodate commercial establishments. Likely occupants include restaurants, eateries, dry cleaners, a bank, a day care provider, and a pharmacy.

The remainder of the site will be devoted to 10-12 office and medical buildings, senior housing, assisted living quarters, and a skilled nursing facility. With the site’s center lying closest to the hospital, access to related medical services will be very convenient.

A variety of attractive lifestyle options are slotted for the senior housing section. These range from care-free duplexes, 4-plexes, and carriage homes to smaller ranch-style homes on zero-maintenance lots. Residents will be able to leisurely walk or bike to the nearby services and employment and easily utilize the proposed bike trail on Ind. 49. Woodland areas will afford pleasant views and restful spots for the enjoyment of nature.

Completion of the medical campus is projected to take 5-8 years. By then, a spectrum of single-family housing and amenities will surround Porter Medical Campus and Senior Living Community. Additional growth in the surrounding areas just North of U.S. 6 off of Meridian will be a soccer/softball/baseball complex and Kleihege’s St. Andrews and Timberland subdivisions. Given that some large commercial tenants are already looking at nearby property, abundant stores and services are likely to be in place to further address the needs of the hospital and of the medical campus and senior living community.

On July 14, St. Andrews LLC will go before the Porter County Commissioners to present the plat for Porter Medical Campus and Senior Living Community and request needed zoning changes. Kleihege hosted a preliminary gathering of interested Porter County residents at Evelyn Bay Coffee Company on June 24 at which planner Chris Lannert explained plans for the mixed-use development. Some of the questions and concerns that arose at the presentation and responses given by Kleihege and Lannert follow.

Q. What kind of re-zoning is required?
A. The current rural residential zoning will need to be re-zoned to modified residential and service commercial. We’ve tried to transition from the more intense facilities to R-1 at the north end of the property. The assisted living will be zoned R-4, the senior housing R-3, and the office area OT. The R-3 and R-4 zoning designations allow flexibility of senior housing built in those sections.

Q. How will the drainage issue be addressed? What will be done about run-off from the volume of horizontal surfaces?
A. In addition to plans for two retention ponds, we are working with Save the Dunes Council to create bioswales, landscape elements designed to remove silt and pollution from surface runoff water. Bioswales are commonly used around parking lots to break down automotive pollution that gets collected by the paving and then flushed by rain before the runoff is released. It’s best not to re-direct drainage.
We are trying to include as few roads as possible.

Q. Who will maintain the bioswales, retention ponds, etc.?
A. Normally a master association addresses these issues. There will be separate associations for each area–commercial, office, and residential. All of these groups must work together to control what goes into Damon Run Watershed.

Q. There is urgency in getting U.S. 6 made into a four-lane highway. How are you addressing the potential traffic issues?
A. The county is addressing the highway issue. We have included an egress at the rear of our property to ease the flow of traffic onto U.S. 6. There is over 100 feet of elevational change at the front portion of the property. For highway safety, the entrance has to be at the high point.

Q. How great is the distance between the hospital entrance and the entrance to this property?
A. About 1,200 feet, approximately a quarter of a mile.

Q. How large will the lots be in the single residential section?
A. 200’ x 270’

Q. Will nearby homeowners’ water sources be affected?
A. They will not. The entire campus will have public sewer and water supplies. American Indiana Water will supply the water and Damon Run Conservancy District or Chesterton will provide the public sewers.
Presently the website is under construction. Kleihege stated that once accessible, frequent updates and notifications will be available. For more information on The Medical Campus development call Patrick Kleihege at (219) 462-1488 or email him at

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