Metro Mulls Power Plant Purchase

August 4, 2007
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WYOMING — Metro Health is negotiating with a Chicago facilities firm to purchase the power plant at its new location, the chief financial officer said last week.

The 20,000-square-foot plant, with a state equalized value of $1.08 million, is at 5869 Metro Way SW, directly adjacent to the new hospital, said Wyoming City Assessor Gene Vogan. It is owned by Amicus Energy Solutions LLC, a subsidiary of Chicago-based Institutional Project Management.

CFO Tim Susterich said Metro Health expects to reach a decision on the power plant purchase within four to six weeks. “Basically we’re in negotiation with IPM and their financing folks to buy them out of their other financing,” Susterich said. “We’re looking at it as potentially being lower cost overall and lower costs for the patients.”

In a letter of intent submitted as part of the state’s Certificate of Need process, Metro Health pegged the cost at $22.5 million, to be covered by bonds. However, the Michigan Department of Community Health has declined to review the proposed purchase.

The plant includes boilers and chillers for heat and air conditioning, and emergency generators, said Ken McHugh, president & CEO of IPM, which specializes in facilities for nonprofits.

McHugh said his company became involved in the project to revamp central utility plant plans that “had proven not to be particularly workable” and could have delayed service to the hospital, which is scheduled to open Sept. 30. IPM was able “to work out a structure to meet their financial needs, as well as their schedule,” he said. The plant is in operation now as finishing touches are completed in the hospital.

McHugh said the deal allows Metro Health to purchase the plant “if and when they find themselves in the financial position to allow it. They just have to serve us notice. We’re really in there as a facilitator.”

He said the plant is in the process of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification. The new hospital and all the buildings in the Metro Health Village development are expected to be LEED-compliant.

“We’re quite proud of the boilers and the look of it,” said McHugh, adding that his firm intends to post pictures of the plant on its Web site. The plant is IPM’s first venture in Michigan, he added.

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