Windsor Regional Hospital and University of Windsor team up for potential 'health and innovation park'

Proposed acute-care hospital site at County Road 42 and Concession Road 9 in Windsor on Nov. 8, 2017. (Rich Garton / CTV Windsor)

Windsor Regional Hospital and the University of Windsor are in talks to create a new health and innovation park focused on research, education and training.

The potential partnership would see a park build on lands purchased for the future Windsor-Essex acute care hospital, a news release from the hospital said.

“Research and Education has always been one of the main drivers behind the need for a new acute care hospital in the region,” said David Musyj, WRH president and CEO. “Windsor Regional Hospital looks forward to this planning work with the University of Windsor to advance this concept further. The relationships developed by WE-SPARK Health Institute naturally transition into this exciting planning.”

Officials said the project would “position Windsor-Essex as a leading region for education, training and research for the health care sector for many years to come.” The plans come after many years of discussion and exploring opportunities to expand on the region’s health and research capacity.

“Through the years, we have continued to build on the vital connections between our institutions,” Rob Gordon, president and vice chancellor of the university said. “Students, especially those at the Faculty of Science, School of Nursing and the Schulich School of Medicine, have all benefited from our long-standing relationship through experiential learning - and we have also been exceptional partners in research, innovation and outreach including the WE-SPARK Health Institute.”

Officials anticipate the Heath Innovation Park would include:

  • Dedicated space for collaborative research and training.
  • Expanded government and private sector health service providers and collaborations.
  • Space for business to assist in research, from innovation through to commercialization, supporting new ventures and startup investors.

The park could also include hotel space for short-term accommodations, residential housing for staff and students, a long-term care facility, wellness centre and professional medical office, officials said. 

Discussions will continue as plans for the new hospital develop, it is expected the timing for the Heath Innovation Park would coincide with the opening of the new hospital.