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UNT buying Osteopathic property

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Could this be the beginning of the Pharm school??

UNT buying Osteopathic property

UNT buying Osteopathic property

Star-Telegram

FORT WORTH - Just days after seeing the former campus of the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas sell for $6.5 million at a foreclosure auction, the University of North Texas said Monday that it agreed to buy the property from its new owner.

The university said it expects to close on the purchase by April 1. It did not immediately disclose the price it agreed to pay Fort Worth lawyer Robert Patton, who bought the west Fort Worth property Tuesday.

"The health science center could not purchase the property at auction, because the foreclosure process does not meet various state requirements for property purchase," the university said.

"The state requires that a property purchased by a state entity include a title policy, survey, and other similar items as a safeguard to protect taxpayer money," the university said. "At a foreclosure sale, properties are purchased as is."

Ronald Blanck, president of the health science center, said last week that the university planned to try and negotiate a purchase of the hospital from Patton.

"We're very happy to work with Mr. Patton, whose appreciation of the health science center allowed us to purchase the former OMCT property for less than other offers he had received," Blanck said.

The health science center did not announce immediate plans for the property.

"Before any plans for the property can be made, the health science center will commission a master plan," Blanck said.

The hospital closed in the fall, triggering speculation on what would happen to the main property at Montgomery Street and Camp Bowie Boulevard.

The main property is valued at $38.7 million by the Tarrant Appraisal District for taxing purposes.

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Posted

If anyone in Cowtown thought NORTH TEXAS would not buy this property they would be in a minority.

UNIVERSITY of NORTH TEXAS Health Science Center at Fort Woth is one block from my post office so I have seen this med school grow dramatically the last decade or so.

Wonder if it would be cost effective to re-open the facility as a hospital where DO's, Hospital Administrators, and future Pharmacy students could all serve their internships among a professional staff?

For certain, I can't see us tearing the building down merely for parking spots, but the building does need to be spruced up a bit to fit the rest of our med school's campus architectural scheme.

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Posted on Tue, Feb. 08, 2005

R E L A T E D C O N T E N T

STAR-TELEGRAM/ JEFFERY WASHINGTON

The lawyer who bought the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas in Fort Worth last week has agreed to sell it to the UNT Health Sciences Center.

More photos...

Health science center to buy hospital site

By Barry Shlachter

Star-Telegram Staff Writer

A Fort Worth lawyer who bought the former Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas for $6.5 million last week has agreed to flip the Cultural District hospital complex to the nearby University of North Texas Health Sciences Center.

Dr. Ronald Blanck, president of the UNT Health Sciences Center, an osteopathic medical school, said Monday that he cannot disclose the price until state authorities are informed of the deal, which could be a "couple of weeks."

Lawyer Robert "Bobby" Patton Jr., who bought the complex at a foreclosure auction a week ago, would say only that the health sciences center paid less than $17 million -- and less than another offer the lawyer received in the past week.

Patton confirmed that he had gotten larger proposals than the one he accepted, but all were oral.

"Did I have a written contract offer? No," he said. "Did I have people tell me I could get you more money? I had a lot of that. But the University of North Texas was the only one who brought a checkbook. Did I leave money on the table? Who knows? But why should I take the risk?"

Patton's winning bid was a fraction of the $38.7 million value set by the Tarrant Appraisal District for the Montgomery Street campus. The hospital's bond insurer turned down a $25 million offer last year, Blanck said.

Patton said he had expected to develop the campus until UNT came calling.

"I thought I was in for the long haul," he said. "I just didn't think anyone would make me an offer that I'd accept to flip."

Citing a confidentiality agreement, Patton declined to cite the figure he accepted. But Blanck said it "is a fair amount more than Mr. Patton paid for it."

A master plan for the 461,805-square-foot building at Montgomery Street and Camp Bowie Boulevard will be commissioned before any particular uses will be announced, Blanck said.

The complex could house some or all of the center's school of public health and day clinics, but not a hospital with 24-hour care, Blanck said.

Until shortly before the auction, the health sciences center was negotiating with MBIA Insurance Corp., the Armonk, N.Y.-based insurer of Osteopathic hospital bonds totaling $70.6 million, and had made MBIA an initial offer of $10 million, Blanck said.

"They said, 'Great. As soon as we buy the property, we'll sit down and discuss it,' " Blanck said.

A major lender, J.P. Morgan Chase, bought some minor parcels at the auction but stopped bidding against Patton for the hospital after the price hit $5.4 million.

When the center asked why MBIA didn't seriously bid, a real estate agent for the firm said her client "had no risk tolerance," said Greg Upp, the health science center's vice president of institutional coordination.

The agent cited concerns by MBIA that the health science center could acquire the property through eminent domain, leaving it "pennies on the dollar," Blanck said.

State regulations prevented the health science center, a state agency, from buying the property at a foreclosure sale.

MBIA offices were closed late Monday, and no spokesman could be reached to comment. According to its Web site, the insurer had expected to recoup $22 million of its $70.6 million exposure through sale or liquidation of the property.

Hospital administrators had tried since 2003 to find a buyer for its operation but gave up after defaulting on debt payments last year. About 1,000 employees lost their jobs.

Patton said he has negotiated the purchase of a University Drive pediatric clinic that J.P. Morgan Chase bought at last week's auction.

And he confirmed that he has concluded a separate agreement to sell the 11,000-square-foot structure to UNT Health Sciences Center. The price was not disclosed.

But Patton hasn't broken out the champagne yet.

"I am going to celebrate when I actually get the money," he said. "I keep thinking something is going to go wrong."

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