NEW COOPER GREEN: $120M state of the art medical clinic approved

Cooper Green
Rendering of new Cooper Green Mercy. (UAB)

The Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama System has given final approval to the Cooper Green Mercy Health Services Authority to replace the current Cooper Green building with a state-of-the-art medical clinic. 

The new five-story building will be 207,000 square feet with an overall estimated cost of $120 million. The new clinic will be built on the site of the former Cooper Green parking deck, which was demolished earlier this year.

Regardless of Ability to Pay

A vitally important community hospital and medical clinic, Cooper Green was first called Mercy Hospital when it opened 50 years ago in 1972 as a 319-bed acute care hospital.

Owned by Jefferson County, the hospital provides medical services to all residents of the county regardless of their ability to pay. It is a full-service ambulatory care facility that includes primary and specialty care clinics, urgent care, physical, occupational and speech therapy, laboratory services, imaging, and pharmacy.

In 1975, it was renamed Cooper Green to honor former Birmingham mayor Cooper Green. Cooper Green Mercy Health Services Authority is now an affiliate of the UAB Health System.

“We are building a first-class medical facility to serve the residents of Jefferson County,” said David Randall, chief strategy officer for the UAB Health System and board president and CEO of the Cooper Green Mercy Health Services Authority in a UAB news release. “Jefferson County leadership and UAB are committed to providing the highest-quality health care for Cooper Green patients, and this new facility is an important step to achieve that goal.”

2020 Agreement

Under an April 2020 agreement  between Jefferson County and the UAB Health System, the Cooper Green Mercy Health Services Authority was created to manage Cooper Green. 

The reason for the construction of the new clinic is simple. The current building is costly to maintain and no longer suited to the efficient delivery of modern ambulatory health care. 

The Cooper Green Mercy Health Services Authority provides high-quality health care to all residents of Jefferson County. It is a full-service ambulatory care facility that includes primary and specialty care clinics, urgent care, physical, occupational and speech therapy, laboratory services, imaging, and pharmacy.  

“We are excited to know that the next stage of Cooper Green’s long service to Jefferson County is moving forward,” said Cal Markert, Jefferson County manager. “The collaboration between the county and the UAB Health System has brought us to this pivotal moment, and we’re thrilled we will soon be able to offer our patients a truly world-class medical facility.”

Amenities

According to UAB, the new medical clinic will include several amenities:

  • Expanded rehabilitation suite that will include a covered outdoor section for developing outdoor skills such as navigating curbs and different ground surfaces
  • New magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine 
  • Separate phlebotomy and injection clinics will streamline laboratory visits and improve the process of vaccinations 
  • Clinic areas will be designed to support team-based, multidisciplinary care, making clinic visits more centralized for the comfort of the patients
  • Facility will  incorporate natural light throughout the building in stairwells and waiting areas 
  • Oncology infusion suites will feature windows in each treatment room
  • Gift shop, and food service options 

Other professional and community services will be housed at the new medical clinic,, including Cahaba Dental, the Recovery Resource Crisis Center, UAB Community Psychiatry and the UAB School of Nursing PATH clinic.  

Two prominent Birmingham based companies will carry out the project. Brasfield Gorrie will be the general contractor, while Gresham Smith is the architecture firm.

Still Open

JPEG image 15 NEW COOPER GREEN: $120M state of the art medical clinic approved
Cooper Green Mercy Health Services.(Tira Davis / Bham Now)

Construction on the new clinic begins this winter. Meanwhile, Cooper Green will remain open and continue to operate as normal as an outpatient clinic at 1515 6th Avenue South. 

Urgent care is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Clinics are open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

What a way to celebrate its 50th year! What are your thoughts of the new state of the art medical clinic at Cooper Green? Tell us on social media by tagging us at @bhamnow

Pat Byington
Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.

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