Plans for new outpatient health clinics east of the Anacostia River have been key for the turnaround of D.C.-owned United Medical Center. But officials recently had a big old wrench tossed into those plans.
Interim CEO David Small told the hospital's board last week that work to open a new outpatient clinic in early 2015 in Congress Heights — most recently vacated by Unity Health Care — has been put on indefinite hold. The reason: The property itself has become embroiled in an unrelated dispute.
The District is suing Fairfax-based property owner King Office LLC, saying the owner is refusing to sell despite a clause in the lease contract allowing the District to purchase the property at 50 percent of the property's fair market value when its lease was up, court documents filed in D.C. Superior Court show. That lease ended Jan. 24.
The District says it gave a required 60 days' notice of its intent to purchase, as well as an independent appraisal of $7.9 million for the property. But in court documents, the District says King Office sent a letter saying it refused to recognize the District notice to purchase the property.