Harris Health System Initiates Groundbreaking $1.6 Billion Hospital Project in Northeast Houston

Jo-Carolyn Goode | 5/10/2024, 10:45 a.m.
A significant stride was taken in enhancing healthcare infrastructure in Northeast Houston as the Harris Health System, in collaboration with …

A significant stride was taken in enhancing healthcare infrastructure in Northeast Houston as the Harris Health System, in collaboration with UTHealth Houston and local governmental authorities, celebrated the groundbreaking of a new $1.6 billion hospital facility. This event marks the commencement of a visionary $2.9 billion initiative aimed at expanding and modernizing the county's medical services.

Scheduled to open in late 2028 on the existing Harris Health Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital Campus, the new 12-story structure is poised to replace the outdated LBJ Hospital as the next Level I trauma center in Harris County. This development is a key component of Harris Health's extensive strategic facilities plan which includes upgrading the current LBJ facility, enhancing the capacity of the Ben Taub Hospital, and establishing three additional health centers across Northwest, Southwest, and Eastern Harris County.

photo  Harris Health Groundbreaking event 5-9-24
 felix sanchez..felix sanchez 

Dr. Esmaeil Porsa, President and CEO of Harris Health System, emphasized the critical nature of this project, stating, "With the original LBJ and Ben Taub hospitals over three decades old and our community's rapid growth, there is an urgent need for upgraded facilities. The new Level I trauma center, located outside the Texas Medical Center, will significantly bolster our capability to meet regional healthcare demands alongside our primary care expansion."

The groundbreaking event featured an array of notable attendees including Harris Health and UTHealth Houston executives, Harris Health Strategic Fund philanthropists, and members of the Harris County Hospital District Foundation. Held under an open-air tent and enlivened by music from Kashmere High School's Stage Band, Thunder Soul, the ceremony was a festive yet profound declaration of progress.

Dr. Andrea Caracostis, Board Chair of the Harris Health System, reflected on the project's importance: "This expansion is a monumental step forward in providing cutting-edge, comprehensive healthcare services to all residents of Harris County. This has been long overdue and is vital for enhancing the capacity and capabilities of our healthcare infrastructure."


The new hospital will encompass approximately 1.3 million square feet, offering 390 private rooms with the flexibility to expand an additional 60 rooms as needed. It will also feature a rooftop helipad, 15 dedicated operating rooms, and a state-of-the-art hybrid operating room, ensuring readiness for both routine and complex emergency surgeries.

Dr. Porsa added, "The northeast side has historically been underserved in terms of healthcare facilities. By establishing this hospital here, we are laying down a foundation that will support the community for generations to come."

The project received overwhelming support from Harris County voters, with over 72% approval in a November 2023 bond election, underlining community backing for the expansion.

Additionally, the hospital will serve as an extended clinical training site for UTHealth Houston’s McGovern Medical School residents and faculty. Dr. Porsa, who trained at this site over 30 years ago, highlighted the long-term benefits of this collaboration, noting it as crucial for cultivating future healthcare professionals.

The establishment of this hospital not only promises enhanced healthcare services but also signifies a substantial investment in the future well-being and economic growth of Northeast Houston, ensuring a healthier, more resilient community.

For more info, visit https://www.harrishealth.org/