Erie Community College's (ECC) shortsighted plan to build a health science building at the North Campus in Amherst is running into behind-the-scenes resistance. A few downtown developers and leaders are pushing behind the scenes to have the complex built near the city campus to take advantage of the current and planned investment in the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.
ECC is proposing to build a $30 million health science building at the North Campus in Amherst. The project would replace and augment the current science facilities with a new 100,000G sq.ft. state-of-the art multi-story building to serve current and future academic needs.
The new building will house programs such as Nursing, Dental Hygiene, Dental Laboratory, Emergency Medical Technology, Dietetic Technology, Clinical Laboratory Technician, Medical Office Assistant, Mental Health Assistant, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Ophthalmic Dispensing, Radiologic Technology, Respiratory Care and Dental Assisting.
County Executive Chris Collins earlier this year said the County would borrow $7.5 million in 2012 for a new academic building, if the college could raise the same amount. The state would bond $15 million to pay for the balance of the project.
UB's plan for a Downtown Campus involves the creation of a world-class center of clinical practice, medical education, health sciences research, and the translation of new knowledge into practical applications - one that is expected to rival other academic health centers across the nation. Integrating UB's five health sciences schools - dental, medical, nursing, pharmacy, and public health - with the resources of Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, and other members of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) can make that happen.
The long-range plan calls for approximately 4.2 million sq.ft. of space to accommodate a projected population of 14,000 UB students, faculty, and staff downtown. UB is reinforcing the Medical Campus as the health sciences hub of Western New York.
ECC appears to hell-bent in heading in the other direction.