Medical Office Market Continues Expansion Trend.
The medical office market in Columbia, South Carolina, has experienced rapid change over the past few years. A new outlook on patient care services has created a shift from inpatient to outpatient treatments. Consequently, some medical practices are choosing to locate closer to suburban neighborhoods while others are focused towards locations within medical office buildings on hospital campuses. Hospitals as well as practices continue to reposition as the ever changing heathcare industry evolves.
New medical development has occurred in populated suburban areas rather than in the central business district. Currently, the Northeast, Irmo and Lexington submarkets are being pursued by hospitals such as Lexington Medical Center and Palmetto Health.
The first half of 2012 brought positive improvement to the medical office market in Columbia as the overall market vacancy rate dropped below 10% for the first time in over four years. Most of the increased activity can be attributed to expansion projects in the Lexington submarket.
Construction continues on the expansion of Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge in Northwest Columbia with the $99-million investment expected to be completed in late 2013. The campus, including a new 80,000 square foot medical office building, will help serve the residents of Northwest Columbia and surrounding areas who are currently traveling to other parts of Columbia for healthcare services. The opening of the campus is predicted to stimulate economic development as it will likely attract businesses such as physician offices, medical equipment suppliers, hotels and restaurants to the area.
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