An Alternative Plan for ECC’s Proposed Medical Classroom Building: Sheehan Hospital

Looks like we may have a
viable downtown alternative for ECC’s proposed Health Sciences Classroom

An alternative plan was
proposed by Council Member Pridgen last week in the Buffalo News.  This alternative plan
suggests that Erie Community College (ECC) use the vacant Sheehan Hospital,
located next to the existing City Campus, for all of their medical related
classroom needs. With 140,000 square feet of hospital space readily available,
the existing building is a perfect candidate for what ECC needs. Right now ECC
has proposed to spend $30 Million dollars to build a new, 100,000 sf Health
Sciences classroom building at the Amherst Location, approximately 15 miles from
where a building like this should be built –  within close proximity to
the ever expanding  Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.

Young Citizens for ECC has
already spoken out in support for this plan, stating that “YC4ECC feels
strongly that investing in the downtown campus will lead to a stronger, more
accessible community college for all students across WNY.”  Investing in
our regional core provides accessibility to all citizens, a move which allows
everyone in Erie County the opportunity to be educated. Considering the proximity of
the medical corridor and the downtown ECC campus, Investing in Sheehan will
create a much desired partnership between the two entities  and this
proposal is the chance to make that happen.

Bernice Radle, Co- Chair
of YC4ECC stated that “As the medical campus continues to grow, so will the
need for doctors, technicians and other medical related jobs. Investing in
Sheehan Hospital will allow ECC to be the important connector needed to provide
students with access to jobs, networking events, internships and other medical
related opportunities happening in the medical corridor. Investing in our
downtown hub has the potential to unlock the doors that students need to grow,
learn and ultimately see success.”

Council Member Pridgen supports
this alternative, stating in the Buffalo News “If the jobs are in the medical
corridor, and you have the main community college of Buffalo located in
downtown Buffalo, at least a portion of it, why wouldn’t you connect the jobs
and the education in the same area?” “This to me seems like a win-win,
especially when we’re talking about building a premier medical campus.”

Now the real question is –
Will ECC consider this viable alternative? 

About the author  ⁄ Mike Puma

Writing for Buffalo Rising since 2009 covering development news, historic preservation, and Buffalo history. Works professionally in historic preservation.

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