Fox Chase Cancer Center to join Jeanes


Two of the North­east’s largest med­ic­al in­sti­tu­tions will be­gin their long-dis­cussed mer­ger on Ju­ly 1.

Fox Chase Can­cer Cen­ter will ex­pand in­to neigh­bor­ing Jeanes Hos­pit­al and join Jeanes as part of the Temple Uni­versity Health Sys­tem.

Joe Schofield, as­so­ci­ate dir­ect­or at Jeanes, and Gary Weyh­muller, chief op­er­at­ing of­ficer at the can­cer cen­ter, de­tailed some of the plans dur­ing the bi­monthly meet­ing of the Fox Chase Homeown­ers As­so­ci­ation and Town Watch last Wed­nes­day night.

The first pro­ject will be to build a 31-square-foot can­cer pa­tient care unit on the third floor of Jeanes’ Founder’s Build­ing. The unit will fea­ture 41 private pa­tient rooms and be con­tained with­in the ex­ist­ing struc­ture.

The Founder’s Build­ing is the old­est on the Jeanes cam­pus and dates to 1927. The hos­pit­al opened one year later with an en­dow­ment from the es­tate of Anna T. Jeanes, a mem­ber of a prom­in­ent Phil­adelphia Quaker fam­ily.

The 147-bed gen­er­al hos­pit­al is at 7600 Cent­ral Ave. and shares a 47.5-acre cam­pus with 100-bed can­cer cen­ter. A foot­bridge phys­ic­ally con­nects the in­sti­tu­tions.

Ac­cord­ing to Schofield, the part­ners will soon is­sue a re­quest for pro­pos­als and hope to be­gin con­struc­tion in the fall. The build should take 18 to 20 months.

About 54 Jeanes of­fice work­ers will be dis­placed to make room for the can­cer unit but will be re­tained. The unit will oc­cupy 20,000 square feet now used as of­fice space, as well as part of Jeanes’ pa­tient unit 3C.

“No jobs will be lost,” Schofield said, adding that the hos­pit­als hope to cre­ate jobs with their “new ven­ture.”

The med­ic­al fa­cil­it­ies began dis­cuss­ing a pos­sible mer­ger last year after the can­cer cen­ter failed in its ef­forts to ex­pand its foot­print in­to neigh­bor­ing Burholme Park. They reached a mer­ger agree­ment in Decem­ber and re­por­ted dir­ectly to the Fox Chase Homeown­ers in March.

The can­cer cen­ter brings in­to the part­ner­ship a strong “brand” as a na­tion­ally re­cog­nized and cer­ti­fied can­cer fa­cil­ity, Weyh­muller said, while Jeanes and Temple of­fer the can­cer cen­ter the op­por­tun­ity to ex­pand pa­tient care and re­search.

Mean­while, the can­cer cen­ter con­tin­ues its pre­vi­ously ap­proved de­vel­op­ment of a new on-cam­pus re­search build­ing that does not in­fringe on park ground, Weyh­muller said.

In oth­er meet­ing busi­ness:

• Matt Braden, pres­id­ent of the homeown­ers as­so­ci­ation, re­it­er­ated the group’s op­pos­i­tion to the leg­al­iz­a­tion of a fence on a res­id­en­tial prop­erty on the 8100 block of El­ber­on Ave.

Ac­cord­ing to Braden, the fence ap­pears to be iron, painted black and about 6 feet tall, in vi­ol­a­tion of a height re­stric­tion in the city’s zon­ing code. The prop­erty is zoned R-4 (res­id­en­tial), cov­ers about a quarter-acre and fea­tures a 2.5-story stone single home, prop­erty tax re­cords show.

Nobody at the meet­ing re­spon­ded when Braden asked if the own­er or his rep­res­ent­at­ive wished to speak. Neigh­bors claimed that the fence was built about two years ago.

Bob Bar­rilli, an ad­min­is­trat­ive as­sist­ant to City Coun­cil­man Bri­an O’Neill spe­cial­iz­ing in zon­ing, re­por­ted that neigh­bors com­plained to O’Neill’s of­fice about the fence dur­ing its con­struc­tion. Bar­rilli con­tac­ted the De­part­ment of Li­censes & In­spec­tions, which sent an in­spect­or to the site, he said.

The in­spect­or did not is­sue a vi­ol­a­tion no­tice then, but would have in­formed the homeown­er about ap­plic­able code re­stric­tions, Bar­rilli said.

Con­struc­tion con­tin­ued. Braden and oth­er neigh­bors now think the com­pleted fence is un­sightly. The prop­erty own­er has ap­plied to the city for a zon­ing vari­ance. A pub­lic hear­ing is sched­uled for 2 p.m. on Wed­nes­day, May 16, at the Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment, 1515 Arch St.

• Braden in­tro­duced George Bez­i­nas as the new vice pres­id­ent of the homeown­ers as­so­ci­ation. The civic group’s ex­ec­ut­ive board ap­poin­ted Bez­i­nas to fill the va­cancy.

Bez­i­nas is a Cent­ral High School so­cial stud­ies teach­er and a five-year res­id­ent of Fox Chase who has at­ten­ded civic meet­ings reg­u­larly for the last three years.

• Matt Kee­ley, a mem­ber of Amer­ic­an Le­gion Post 366, in­vited neigh­bors to at­tend two com­munity events.

On Me­mori­al Day, May 28, there will be a ce­re­mony to hon­or de­ceased mil­it­ary vet­er­ans at Lawn­view Cemetery, 500 Hunt­ing­don Pike, Rockledge. The event will start at 11 a.m.

The Loudensla­ger Amer­ic­an Le­gion Post 366, 7976 Ox­ford Ave., will host A Night at the Races to be­ne­fit the Wounded War­ri­or Pro­ject on Fri­day, June 1, at 7:30 p.m.

The $25 ad­vance tick­et price ($35 after May 25) in­cludes ad­mis­sion, food, soda, beer and en­ter­tain­ment. Spon­sors can also “buy” and “name” in­di­vidu­al horses for $10 each.

At­tendees must be age 21 or older and may place wagers on pre-re­cor­ded horse races shown on video. The films are dis­trib­uted ran­domly and de­livered in sealed con­tain­ers, so or­gan­izers do not know the res­ults in ad­vance.

Checks should be sent to Doc Quin­lan c/o Post 366, 7976 Ox­ford Ave., Phil­adelphia, PA 19111.

• The next Fox Chase Homeown­ers As­so­ci­ation and Town Watch meet­ing will be on Wed­nes­day, Ju­ly 11, at 7:30 p.m., at Amer­ic­an Le­gion Post 366. ••End­Frag­ment 

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