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Changes are making this a better community

It’s not every day that a community builds a hospital. In fact it’s been a decade here in the Las Vegas Valley.

Opening a medical school at the area’s major public university is even rarer. Like never been done before.

Changes are all around us yet there’s a difference between an intellectual understanding that X or Y is happening and connecting with the reality.

That’s the beauty of the Southern Nevada Business of Medicine supplement that appears with this edition of the Business Press.

Pulling together status reports on a wide range of projects taking place in the health care space shines a bright light on the seismic change that is taking place in and around Las Vegas.

We’re well on our way to establishing the kind of care that can attract medical tourism – and do a better job of treating the locals too.

The Henderson Hospital has taken shape and will be opening its doors this fall.

Both Roseman University and UNLV are anticipating starting classes in the fall of 2017 with a goal of producing the next generation of medical providers for our community.

Existing hospitals are expanding – from Dignity Health’s Siena campus in the south to Centennial Hospital in the northwest.

The Las Vegas Medical District is poised to move from the drawing board to the construction phase. Union Village is adding components to its ambitious plan.

And when the dust settles, there will be profound changes to the region’s economy, likely followed by even more construction as progress builds on progress.

It’s an exciting time to be in the Las Vegas market.

Icing the deal

There’s another game-changer taking place on a relatively small parcel between I-15 and New York New York.

The T-Mobile Arena opens with a gala April 6. It’s the kind of date that will go down in the history of this city.

The opening of a pro-ready sports facility should help us over our ‘are we really major league’ doubts. The question has long been answered in the affirmative but when the likes of the NCAA and the NFL continue their long policy of shunning us as a dangerous gambling site, some doubts creep in.

The stage is set and Bill Foley is waving his $500 million check. So where’s the team?

Regular readers of this space may recall my doubts that the NHL will do any better here than it’s done in Phoenix or Miami or Raleigh or Atlanta. Some towns just aren’t built for hockey over the long haul.

But I’ve always said I’m rooting for Foley to land a team. It’ll be a fun ride for awhile. Besides, being the #1 team in Las Vegas could be better than being #4 in the larger Arizona metropolis. And it’s his money.

I also feel for the guy. He’s done everything the league has asked; he’s held his tongue when it must be painful. Yet the league is letting him twist in the wind.

The window is shrinking if Las Vegas is going to create a competitive hockey team in time for a fall 2017 opening. Building a practice facility is top of mind but building an organization seems more pressing.

The common narrative seems to be that the companion Quebec City bid is in deep trouble. The NHL would rather have Seattle but that’s not an option at the moment.

So the NHL executives keep stalling. Clearly they’d like to grab Foley’s money but a rising economy may make that less an imperative than solving one of the troubled franchises, helping the geographic imbalance and not diluting the revenue stream with a new mouth to feed.

While the clock says time is running out on starting a new team from scratch, buying new uniforms and changing the executive team is a much quicker fix.

Sure, everybody likes the smell of a new car but for half the price, can Foley adjust to a used one?

So how about one that brought a Stanley Cup to Raleigh? Announce it in June and start play in October?

I’ve heard worse ideas.

Your thoughts are welcome. Contact Editor Norm Bell at nbell@businesspress.vegas

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