Developments on Michigan State University’s medical school campus in downtown Grand Rapids will drive $339 million in annual economic impact on the city when fully complete next year.
The estimate for a “significant economic effect on the surrounding community” comes from an analysis conducted by Grand Valley State University’s Seidman College of Business for MSU’s College of Human Medicine.
The analysis estimates that the MSU facilities along Michigan Street — plus Perrigo Co. plc’s planned North American headquarters that will rise on the medical school’s research and innovation campus — will directly support 1,100 jobs, plus another 900 indirectly, that pay $142 million annually.
The GVSU analysis offers a look at the economic impact from MSU College of Human Medicine, which moved to Grand Rapids in 2009 with a promise to build a substantial research base and partnerships to commercialize innovations that transform health care.
The report “showcases ‘mission accomplished’ of what we were trying to bring together as a community,” Norman Beauchamp, MSU’s executive vice president for health services, said today during a presentation at The Economic Club of Grand Rapids on Monday.
“The results over the last decade have been remarkable,” said Beauchamp, who envisions Grand Rapids becoming a center for health innovation in cancer, pediatrics, women’s and reproductive health, autism and both Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.
“What’s particularly important is it’s not about MSU. It’s really about this ecosystem we connected to,” he said. “In each of these areas of focus, we partnered with strengths in the community so that we can have the biggest impact. There’s a saying, ‘Everything is possible if you don’t care who gets the credit,’ and we’ve really tried to embrace that.”
Since relocating to Grand Rapids from East Lansing in 2009, the MSU College of Human Medicine developed the Secchia Center at Michigan Street and Division Avenue in downtown as the medical school’s home, then the Grand Rapids Research Center next door that’s now home to more than 185 research scientists
Construction continues on the $19.5 million Doug Meijer Medical Innovation Building and work was set to begin this week on Perrigo’s $44.8 million North American headquarters, which will join the medical school’s research campus on Michigan Street, between Ionia Avenue and Monroe Avenue.
The four projects that anchor the eastern end of Grand Rapids’ Medical Mile collectively cost $295.1 million.
Building out the College of Human Medicine’s campus downtown also contributes to the health care and research cluster along the Medical Mile that includes the nearby Van Andel Institute and Spectrum Health, according to GVSU. The growing cluster helps to draw researchers and physicians to Grand Rapids and the ability to secure federal research grant funding, GVSU concluded.
“The scientific innovation underway is also elevating the stature of research being done across the Medical Mile, leading to better chances at getting grants and recruiting top researchers, not only for Michigan State University, but also for the other research centers in Grand Rapids,” concluded the economic impact analysis conducted by GVSU’s Paul Isely and Christian Glupker.
Since the Secchia Center opened in September 2010 and the Grand Rapids Research Center in fall 2017, MSU has received $131 million in National Institutes of Health grants and other federal funding for work at the facilities, according to the GVSU analysis. The VAI as well estimates that its NIH grant funding improved by as much as $1.8 million annually “because of the existence of complementary research facilities at the Secchia Center and GRRC,” Isely and Glupker wrote in the report.
GVSU also noted that the 205,500-square-foot Doug Meijer Medical Innovation Building that’s targeted to open later this year has already met the 75 percent lease threshold while under construction. The business incubator will house startup firms that will employ 105 to 178 people.
Among the future tenants in the Doug Meijer Innovation Building is BAMF Health LLC, a Grand Rapids company working to move radiopharmaceuticals from the research lab to commercial use for molecular imaging used in precision treatment for cancer patients that can result in complete remission without side effects.
“The platform we are trying to build over here will allow us to capture disease no current technology can catch and to treat disease no current technology can treat,” said Dr. Anthony Chang, founder and CEO of BAMF Health.
Chang believes BAMF Health’s clinic in Grand Rapids “will become a global destination for patients and medical professionals.”
“Patients and their families are going to come here to receive the treatment and the professionals will come here to train,” he said.
BAMF Health as well will create 100 to 200 new positions within two years that require an advanced degree, Chang said.