MIDDLETOWN – Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine officially launched Tuesday afternoon with a ceremony highlighting the ‘win-win-win’ relationship between the college, the City of Middletown, and the region.
“Demonstrating a continued investment in New York and our students” is how Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy defined it during remarks at the former Horton Hospital in Middletown.
“This is a triple crown of projects,” Duffy said. “Number one, it’s going to improve education. It’s going to have up to 500 medical students at any given time here on this great campus when it’s at full capacity. Number two, as I mentioned, it’s going to improve regional healthcare. All the doctors that it will graduate from this great school will stay in this region, will stay and provide healthcare to counties, Orange County, but all the surrounding in the Mid-Hudson region. That’s a great one. And three is regional economic development.”
Middletown Common Council President Miguel Rodrigues said it has been a six-year effort to get state officials to see what was here.
“We showed them want we have to offer” Rodrigues said. “We’re close to the highways. We have everything here. We put a team together, included all the elected officials in the county and the council and the mayor. We put it all together and we went up to the governor’s office and we told them ‘this is going to work’, and they believed in us.”
Touro President Dr. Alan Kadish said this is the beginning of something big.
“I truly believe that if we come back here in five years, what we’ll see is a vibrant place, with hundreds of new jobs, hundreds and hundreds of new medical students, state of the art medical education innovative techniques,” Kadish said.
A few Touro students are already doing some work in Middletown. The inaugural class is expected to begin in August 2014 and when fully operational will enroll over 500 students and occupy 110,000 square feet of space at the former hospital.
In addition to the college’s presence, campus owner Danza-Leser Group will develop 250 units of housing for students and faculty and is in discussions to include a 200-student school operated by Allied Health and an assisted living facility.
The project is expected to generate $275 million in economic activity.