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Adaptive Reuse: Transforming Big-Box Groceries into Community Outpatient Health Centers

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In the past decade, retail health has emerged as a popular model for bringing quality healthcare into American communities. As retailers go online, their former storefronts present opportunities for repurposing into outpatient health centers that are mutually beneficial to patients and healthcare institutions. Patient consumers can enjoy the convenience and customer experience of a retail facility located in their neighborhood while medical facilities can fulfill expansion plans with financially and environmentally efficient solutions. The adaptive reuse of big-box groceries, with their ample parking and strategic locations, has become a competitive iteration of retail health in an increasingly consumer-driven market.

During this session, attendees will follow the development of Vanderbilt Health Belle Meade in Nashville, TN and the BJC Outpatient Center in Edwardsville, IL from former grocery stores to new health centers. Though Vanderbilt Health Belle Meade is an ambulatory surgical center and the BJC Outpatient Center is a multi-specialty healthcare center, these two case studies will explore their opportunities, challenges, and outcomes in transforming former supermarkets into community based, outpatient health centers. Hosted by the Academy of Architecture for Health an AIA Knowledge Community.

Course expires 06/27/2025

Learning Objectives


Identify key opportunities to successfully convert aged, retail buildings into viable health centers.


Learn the difference between an owner-led and a developer-led adaptive reuse project as they evaluate real estate opportunities for community based healthcare centers.


Understand how early determination of gaps in healthcare services can impact the facility’s service lines and healthcare planning.


Discuss economic and environmental factors that can help owners realize financial opportunities and impact the future of healthcare delivery.

Recorded live on August 10, 2022.