The Maryland Board of Public Works approved a 35-foot right of way on Route 22 in Aberdeen, creating access for the freestanding medical center and behavioral health facility Upper Chesapeake is planning to establish there.
The Maryland Board of Public Works approved a 35-foot right of way on Route 22 in Aberdeen, creating access for the freestanding medical center and behavioral health facility Upper Chesapeake is planning to establish there. (Courtesy Upper Chesapeake Health / BSMG)

Upper Chesapeake Health cleared a hurdle recently to build a new medical facility in Aberdeen that will replace Harford Memorial Hospital in Havre de Grace.

The Maryland Board of Public Works approved a 35-foot right of way on Route 22 to create a right-in, right-out access for the freestanding medical center and behavioral health facility Upper Chesapeake is planning to establish on the Merritt Properties.

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Aberdeen OKs site plan for $75 million medical complex

The construction of a new two-and three-story freestanding medical facility that would connect to the existing building, at left, in the Aberdeen Corporate Park on Route 22 was approved by the Aberdeen City Council Monday night.

“The right-in, right-out is needed to improve easier access to the property,” said Martha Mallonee, director of corporate communications, marketing and public relations for Upper Chesapeake.

Merritt, which owns the property, purchased the 35-foot right of way, she said.

The right-in, right-out is the only way to make project viable for services Upper Chesapeake wants to offer, Aberdeen Mayor Patrick McGrady said.

“It is instrumental for the project and it’s important to the regional health care needs of the county,” he said. “And insofar as the Board of Public Works approved the right-in, right-out and makes this project viable, then I’m excited about it.”

University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health expects to settle on the roughly 36-acre site in the next 60 to 90 days.

The health system is still waiting for regulatory approval from the State of Maryland before it can develop a timeline for when the project will begin, Mallonee said.

The Maryland Health Care Commission is reviewing the application.

According to a site plan approved by the Aberdeen City Council in October, the existing 95,870-square-foot building on the site will be used for medical offices, and a 125,000-square-foot, two- and three-story building will be built to house the freestanding medical facility and will connect to the existing building by a raised walkway.

A third building — two-stories and 15,400 square feet — will be located along Route 22.

Both will be built to complement the existing building.

A helipad will be built to the rear of the new building.

New Upper Chesapeake medical center, now planned for Aberdeen, is welcomed by city audience

About 80 people from the community attended a public information session Thursday evening about the plan to close Harford Memorial and build a new medical center around an unoccupied office building off of Route 22 in Aberdeen.

The project replaces the plan that was submitted to the commission as part of Upper Chesapeake’s Vision 2020, which included building a freestanding medical facility and behavioral health center on Bulle Rock Parkway in Havre de Grace and closing Harford Memorial Hospital. The proposal also included expanding Upper Chesapeake Medical Center in Bel Air, which is still part of the project.

While Upper Chesapeake officials say the project was stalled at the city government level in Havre de Grace, it moved quickly through the approval process in Aberdeen, where the plan was first discussed last summer and approved in the fall.

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