New medical center proposed

A local limited partnership headed by a doctor plans to build a 40,000-square-foot medical center near HealthSouth, according to information from Pennvest and the Altoona Water Authority.

The information surfaced after Pennvest awarded a $6.5-million loan to the authority for sewer line work to eliminate wet-weather overflows in Pleasant Valley and Eldorado – overflows that have led to state restrictions on development taps in those areas.

The proposed project by Hollidaysburg Real Estate Holding Co. was cited as possible economic benefit of the sewer project in the application for the loan, helping it win Pennvest approval, according to Pennvest spokeswoman Tess Schlupp.

The partnership – who is listed on the Pennsylvania Corporation Bureau website as Dr. Frederick Murphy of Hollidaysburg – plans to build a “state of the art specialty center” that will attract 100 jobs to that area, Schlupp said.

The center will offer primary care, urgent care, a pharmacy, imaging and lab services, said Schlupp and Pennvest Executive Director Paul Marchetti.

The authority bought some of the holding company’s development tract, leaving 7 acres for the medical project, so it could build a pump station to serve the sewer project, said authority General Manager Mark Perry and Pennvest.

The sewer line project calls for installation of more than 2 miles of line – supplementary lines in Pleasant Valley and both supplementary and replacement lines in Eldorado – so the authority can take advantage of the full 60 million-gallons-a-day capacity of the newly renovated Westerly Sewer Treatment Plant, said authority in-house engineer Mike Sinisi.

Currently, the lines are a limiting factor in handling a heavy flow, Sinisi said.

The projects, being done in keeping with a Department of Environmental Protection corrective action plan, “will free up bottlenecks in the system,” said authority Environmental Services Manager George Boliski and Sinisi.

The bottlenecks on the Pleasant Valley “interceptor” and on the western and south Altoona interceptors that serve Eldorado have led to the rationing of taps by DEP, Boliski said.