Arkansas Children’s Hospital to build $100 million facility in Northwest Arkansas

The land where a new 24-bed pediatric hospital will be built is on the northeast corner of South 56th Street and Watkins Avenue in Springdale.

Photo: Courtesy, Arkansas Children’s Hospital

The state’s largest pediatric hospital will soon expand to Northwest Arkansas.

Little Rock-based Arkansas Children’s Hospital last week announced plans to build a 225,000-square-foot hospital with 24 beds on 37 acres near Arvest Ballpark in Springdale.

Hospital president and CEO Marcy Doderer announced the news at the organization’s annual Color of Hope Gala last Friday night at John Q. Hammons Center in Rogers.

The new campus is part of the hospital’s plan to expand pediatric services across the state.

“We are going to blanket the state with services that will improve access to pediatric care and improve the health of children throughout our state,” Doderer said in a news release. “There is no cookie-cutter approach to planning the delivery of excellent, comprehensive children’s health care. Each area of the state will require a different approach. Based on conversations with physicians, business leaders and families, we know there are immediate needs right here that must be addressed.”

She said more than 21,000 children were treated at the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Clinic located in Lowell, and more than 450 children were transported to Little Rock to the Arkansas Children’s Hospital main campus via Angel One helicopters and ambulances.

With the new centrally-located campus location in Springdale, officials said 70 percent of Northwest Arkansas residents will be able to make it to the hospital within 30 minutes.

The land for the project, located near Interstate 49 between Don Tyson Parkway and U.S. 412, was donated by the George Family, founders of Springdale-based poultry company, George’s Inc.

The George family has a special connection to Arkansas Children’s Hospital.

In 1982, Robin and Gary George’s son Charles went into heart failure at only two weeks old. He was flown to ACH, where he received a cutting-edge procedure to repair his heart. In 2004, their two-year-old grandson Hayden Swope received life-saving care at ACH after contracting an E. coli infection.

“Once you’ve needed ACH, you realize the impact it has on the children of Arkansas,” Gary George said. “My sister and I know firsthand how wonderful the physicians and staff are at ACH. Having access to that kind of world-class care right here in Springdale will be a game changer for so many families.”

ACH will detail additional plans for expanded services across Arkansas throughout the coming months.

The hospital will launch a fundraising campaign soon to raise about $70 million toward the overall project cost, Arkansas Business Reports. Total costs to build, furnish, and operate the hospital for the next five years is estimated at around $184 million.

The facility will include the following:

  • 24 inpatient beds
  • An emergency department/urgent care center with 21 exam rooms
  • 30 clinic exam rooms
  • Five operating rooms
  • Imaging capabilities (MRI, CT and routine x-ray)
  • Diagnostic services (infusion, PFT, EEG, echo, neurophysiology, audiology, rehabilitation)
  • A helipad with a refueling station

Hospital officials are currently interviewing architecture and engineering firms, but the project is expected to move quickly. According to reports, officials are hoping to complete the project by 2018.