Construction, Education, and Health Care

College constructing $37.5M building along Medical Mile

December 1, 2016
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GVSU health professions and nursing building Lafayette and Hastings Grand Rapids partial rendering
A partial rendering of the 84,000-square-foot health professions and nursing building along Medical Mile. Courtesy GVSU

A local college has broken ground on a health care campus along Medical Mile and selected the namesake for the building — a prominent business leader and the project’s first and lead donor.

Grand Valley State University will name the $37.5-million building in Grand Rapids' Belknap Lookout neighborhood Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall after the founder of Grand Rapids-based MC Sports.

A groundbreaking ceremony hosted by the city, GVSU and Neighbors of Belknap Lookout was held last week at the project's site, at 500 Lafayette Ave. NE.

Construction is expected to be completed in May 2018.

The building

The five story, 84,000-square-foot building will feature four classrooms, 15 teaching laboratories, a computer lab and 90 faculty and staff offices to extend the capacity of the university’s College of Health Professions and Kirkhof College of Nursing.

The facility will also house spaces for student study and student organizations, as well as workrooms and break rooms.

A $9 million, two-level parking garage will be part of the campus.

Accommodating growth

Finkelstein, who attended the groundbreaking, said he’s excited about what the building means for the future of Grand Rapids and the region where he grew up.

“We have the finest health care here, not necessarily the biggest, but definitely the finest," he said. "Grand Valley plays an important part in that quality, and we need more talented Grand Valley graduates caring for our families.”

GVSU has about 5,000 students enrolled in its 19 health professions and nursing programs. The Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences, which opened downtown in 2003 on Michigan Street, has exceeded its capacity for four years.

GVSU President Thomas Haas said the new building will help the university catch up to the growth of the health care programs.

"As the leading provider of health care professionals in West Michigan, we need additional and enhanced laboratory, classroom and collaborative workspaces, so that we can continue to attract highly talented students, faculty and caregivers to our region," he said.


The project is being funded by donor support, university-issued bonds and campus development funds.

Firms on the project

Grand Rapids-based Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber is the project’s architect.

Grand Rapids-based Rockford Construction is the project’s contractor.

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