Tulane Signs Lease for Charity Hospital Building
NEW ORLEANS — Tulane University, along with developers 1532 Tulane Partners Inc. and SKK Opportunity Zone Fund I, announced a new phase in the redevelopment of the former Charity Hospital building, which will result in Tulane initially occupying nearly 350,000 square feet through a long-term lease. Over the next few years, the developers and Tulane plan to transform Charity into a mixed-use complex with apartments, retail, educational institutions and other uses, all anchored by Tulane’s academic and research presence.Tulane will occupy over a third of the building’s million square feet, serving as the core tenant of an iconic Tulane Avenue building that has remained empty since Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Tulane will fill its portion of the building with spaces for research, teaching and administration. The Charity project is a central component of a major expansion of Tulane’s downtown campus in the city’s biomedical corridor. The goal is to place more labs and scientists together in an innovation district downtown where “Tulane discoveries can come to market faster, launch spinout companies, support community startup talent and attract outside investment designed to transform New Orleans into a hub of bioscience research,” according to a press release.
Tulane said external funding for its research has risen close to 50% over the last four years and is expected to increase another 50% over the next few years, supporting a robust startup community in the innovation district in the years to come.“The American landscape is filled with cities that have been transformed to become leaders of the 21st-century economy thanks to the presence of a major research university in the center of their downtown commercial district,” Tulane President Michael Fitts said. “This is the shared future of New Orleans and Tulane.”
The project developers will spend the next two and a half years completing base building construction before Tulane develops and customizes its space with the goal of occupying the building in 2025. The plan is to retain Charity’s iconic art deco facade, main lobby, second-floor auditorium and other historical characteristics while fully renovating the interior.