Abandoned Chicago-Area Hospital Finds New Life

By Eric Althoff

AURORA, Ill.—The site of the former Copley Hospital, located 40 miles west of Chicago, will be undergoing a $110 million retrofit, with the ultimate goal of making the redesigned campus viable for medical offices as well as senior citizen housing and residencies for adults with disabilities.

According to the Daily Herald, real estate firm Fox Valley Developers LLC announced in November the plan for the site after approval from the Aurora City Council. Eight buildings were constructed at the site between 1888 and the 1970s, but the entire complex was abandoned in 1995.

An $18.5 million initial outlay to “secure” and remediate the site has already been completed, according to the Herald, and Fox Valley Developers also acquired neighboring land for the express purpose of creating a public park next to the updated mixed-use complex. State funds allocated by the capital of Springfield will be utilized for this park.

Plans for the site include over 100 senior-living units, an independent living apartment complex for adults with cognitive disabilities and a health care center. The Herald reports that the campus will also serve as the future headquarters of East Aurora School District 131, and that the former nurses building will be retrofitted as an administration office.

The estimated cost for the second phase of construction, including the remediation work, is estimated to be $128.5 million. The city of Aurora is putting up $9 million in incentives to assist Fox Valley Developers with that effort, the Herald report said.

Nearly 1,000 jobs will be created as a result of the site of the former Copley Hospital. Construction has already started, with a projected completion scheduled for 2022.