Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect additional information as of 9:30 a.m., Sept. 15.
Engineers were evaluating damage to a portion of the former St. Joseph Hospital Tuesday, after a large section of its brick façade fell from near the top of the six-story building facing College Avenue.
“The façade and the remainder of the vacant building will be evaluated for structural integrity and any necessary repairs,” said Tyler Wagner, a spokesperson for UPMC, the current owner of the building.
Wagner did not answer when the façade bricks fell from the vacant building, but told LNP | LancasterOnline no one had been hurt and the area will stay closed until repairs occur. The bricks fells onto a lower roof level, Wagner said.
On Tuesday, a portion of sidewalk on College Avenue and West Walnut Street was closed off to pedestrians, and loose bricks could be seen on the ground next to the building, several feet away from the sidewalk.
The Pittsburgh-based health care system operated UPMC Pinnacle at 250 College Ave. in the northwest section of Lancaster city for just two years before shuttering in 2019. Before that, the facility was known as Lancaster Regional Medical Center for 17 years.
Now, the property may see a whole new life as part of a sweeping $90 million plan from Lancaster-based HDC MidAtlantic and Baltimore-based Washington Place Equities that would transform the 6.4-acre property into a new housing development.
Developers presented an updated version of their plan to the city’s planning commission in July. The six-story hospital building on College Avenue would include 150 market-rate apartments.
The rest of the development would be made of affordable housing: 50 to 60 new townhouses behind the hospital building, and a new five-story, 64-unit building also below market-rate.
Rebecca Geiser, deputy director for Health, Housing and Community Development at Lancaster city said Tuesday the city had issued a notice of violation to repair or replace the brick façade, and a reinspection is scheduled for Oct. 13.