Places & Faces
Plans Announced for Imperial Pointe
6/22/2016 4:20:02 PM

Developers revealed plans for Imperial Pointe in Lake Charles, Louisiana, last month. Area government officials and business leaders were in attendance to get the first look at the many different components, including the region’s first medical school, planned for this 75-acre development.

Located at the corner of Nelson Road and Imperial Pointe Blvd., Imperial Pointe was designed to be the ultimate village for healthy living. "Our mission is not just to provide facilities for treating illness, but to create easily accessible services and resources to keep people – and our community– healthy, all in one convenient, well-designed location,” says Dr. John Noble, local orthopedic surgeon and Imperial Pointe project leader.

The principles of new urbanism have been artfully blended with the most advanced technological conveniences to create an experience for visitors and residents that can’t befound anywhere else in the region, possibly the entire state, according to Dr. Noble. The upscale architectural design of Imperial Pointe will have a mixture of French and Spanish influence. The buildings will be from one to eight stories with a mixture of brick and stucco. Critical attention will be given to architectural details and landscape.

• medical offices
• wellness facilities
• acute care hospital
• retail space
• professional offices
• restaurants• a hotel
• a variety of residential components, including apartments, a gated subdivision, independent living facility, assisted living/ memory care facility

Dr. Noble says Imperial Pointe residents will have the convenience of being within walking distance to all the services and medical care they need as they move through different stages of their life, and they won’t have to leave their neighborhood to access it.

Imperial Pointe is already home to several medical offices and businesses,including FNBD(First NationalBank DeRidder), Imperial Calcasieu Surgical Center, Center for Orthopaedics, CHRISTUS St. Patrick Wound Care, Hart Eye Center, Endocrinology Center and the Diabetes Education Center of SWLA, Rehab One, CHRISTUS St. Patrick Podiatric Medicine and Surgical Residency, and The Eye Clinic’s new main office, which is under construction and scheduled for completion at the end of the year. 

Lake Charles College of Osteopathic Medicine William Carey University (LCCOM – WCU)
The plan for a proposed medical school on the Imperial Pointe campus was one of the most significant aspects of the announcement. 

Approximately one year ago, the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance contacted William Carey University (WCU) in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, about opening a College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) campus in Lake Charles to meet the need for primary care physicians in the state. Louisiana is 50th in the country in overall health of the population and 42nd in the number of active primary care physicians per 100,000. WCUCOM leadership has met with multiple parties locally and throughout the state, including Governor Edwards, over the past year and determined that there is strong interest in having an osteopathic medical school in Lake Charles. Letters of support have been received from the Louisiana Osteopathic Medical Association.

The SWLA Alliance introduced WCU to Imperial Pointe developers and CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital. The parties have been in negotiations to form a partnership to develop an academic medical center campus on Imperial Pointe. "We are delighted that the WCU College of Osteopathic Medicine is coming to Lake Charles and look forward to partnering with Imperial Health and WCU to train the next generation of physicians for the region,” said Donald Lloyd II, CHRISTUS Southwestern Louisiana President and Chief Executive Officer.

WCU is planning to accept 80 students per year on the Lake Charles campus. An economic impact study conducted by Dr. Daryl Burckel at McNeese found that the initial construction project will create approximately 114 jobs, and the college itself will create approximately 224 new permanent jobs with an estimated sustained economic impact of $19,000,000 per year in the Lake Charles area. 

Gregg S. Silberg, D.O., M.B.A., R.Ph., has been chosen to be the Dean of the LCCOM –WCU campus. The college is optimistically targeting a start date of summer 2018, pending the securing of funding, as well as accreditation from the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation(COCA) and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and Commissions on College (SACSCOC). 

"The expansion of medical education into Southwest Louisiana is in keeping with the mission of William Carey University, to serve underserved areas of the Gulf South,” says Dr. Tommy King, President, William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine. "We will be pleased to partner with the Lake Charles medical community to alleviate the shortage of primary care physicians in the area.

”Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine, or DOs, are fully licensed physicians who practice in all areas of medicine. Emphasizing a whole-person approach to treatment and care, DOs are trained to partner with their patients to help them get healthy and stay well.

In addition to the medical school, Dr. Noble says the first Imperial Pointe projects slated to begin construction this summer are the hospital and the fitness center.
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