Tuesday, November 26, 2013

MCA's Vision Becomes Reality

Fundraising Effort for First MCA Tech Park Building Gains Steam 

The Medical Center of the Americas (MCA) Foundation is ramping up its fundraising efforts to help make the planned Tech Park a reality at the medical campus in Central El Paso. Business and political leaders alike attended a fundraiser held last week for the future Cardwell Collaborative building, which is scheduled to break ground in 2014 at the new MCA Tech Park.
A display at the fundraising event for the Cardwell Collaborative shows construction materials that may be used in the building.

The fundraising effort has resulted in $10.3 million thus far, about 70% of the Foundation’s goal. This leaves around $3 million still left to raise.

The November 21, 2013 gala also honored businessman Jack Cardwell who donated an undisclosed “multi-million” dollar amount for the Tech Park’s first building, which has been named for him. Mr. Cardwell is known for creating the first Petro Stopping Center in 1975 and building it into a national company. The company was sold in 2007.
This concept site plan shows what the eventual layout may look like for the Tech Park. The Cardwell Collaborative building is nearest to Gateway East Boulevard, at the top of the image. (MCA Foundation)

Gala organizers also honored the United States Economic Development Administration (EDA) for a $1 million grant awarded to the Cardwell Collaborative. The federal money can be used towards design and architecture costs. According to its website (www.eda.gov), the EDA “supports development in economically distressed areas of the United States” by making “strategic investments that foster job creation and attract private investment.”

MCA Foundation President Emma Schwartz (right)
 and Patricia Shorter of the EDA.
“Your efforts are gaining nationwide attention in the biomedical industry, simply due to all the collaborative efforts that are taking place from civic and business leaders… things we look at when we are evaluating applications,” stated EDA representative Patricia Shorter of the Austin office, adding, “We are pleased to have been able to plant a seed here in the medical district which we also believe will help the community continue toward economic success.”

Fundraiser attendees were provided a chance to view interior and exterior renderings of the Cardwell Collaborative which were placed around the room. One showed a myriad of materials that may be used in the building’s construction.

A new, high-tech feature currently planned for the building is tentatively called the “Avatar” and will greet visitors, give directions to different parts of the structure, and provide useful information on demand. It may also include a feature which asks the visitor’s name and remembers the person on future visits.

The structure’s footprint on the property was also moved closer to Gateway East Boulevard in order to avoid building on a ponding area. Storm water may be redirected in the future in order to make land to the south of the building more feasible for construction.
The Cardwell Collaborative (site plan shown here) is aiming for $3 million more in donations. (MCA Foundation)

The 83,000 square foot, multi-story building, which will be highly visible from Interstate 10, should break ground in the first half of 2014 with completion set for August of 2015.

Those interested in donating to the Cardwell Collaborative can contact MCA Foundation President Emma Schwartz at ESchwartz@MCAmericas.org. More information on the MCA Foundation can be found at mcamericas.org.

Medical Center of the Americas Growth