DES MOINES, Iowa-- A plan to develop Mercy Medical Center's downtown campus is forcing hundreds of people from their homes.
About 200 people live at Mercy Park Apartments on the east side of the hospital. Today, officials met with residents to inform them that the complex is closing in September 2016.
“I’m saddened for the people that live here. I`m saddened for myself because we really enjoy living here. We have a lot people have become close friends,” said resident Bob Treanor.
He and his wife have lived there for the last four years. Treanor says they expected to spend their golden years at Mercy Park.
“It's a great place to live. It's too bad that we have to give it up. I don't think it's an easy decision for anyone,” said the veteran who received the news on Veterans Day.
Hospital officials say there is no rush to move. They're giving residents ten months notice and will be helping them find a new place to live. Mercy is also offering rent and other discounts to the tenants who are all age 50 and older.
A statement from Mercy reads in part, “While we recognize this will be a very difficult transition, we have met with the Mercy Park residents to share this news to provide considerable time for residents to consider all options and begin to make transition plans. Over the next ten months, mercy will work closely with the residents and their families and will provide them with a relocation assistance package.”
Mercy says the closure is part of the hospital's development and facility improvements, but doesn't know the specific plans for the land.