EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State University's Board of Trustees authorized continued development of the Grand Rapids Research Center on the Medical Mile.

The research center will now enter its second phase of development, which will include construction of a new building on Michigan Street at the site of the research center. The project will also include another future development on Monroe Avenue.

The first building will be seven to nine stories tall, and 200-250,000 square feet.

"It will have different things that are offered in different floors," said Norman Beauchamp, the MSU College of Human Medicine Dean. "For example, there will be a focus on a new approach to the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. There will be a focus on artificial intelligence and how you can use that to provide better care. There will be a focus on what's called the internet of things, which is how do you create devices that allow people to be cared for at home."

Developers will also build a 600 car parking structure behind the buildings, which will be six to seven stories tall.

Health Innovation Partners, a joint venture between MB Real Estate, Walsh Construction/Walsh Investors and Rockford Construction & Development, is the lead developer for the project, and is paying for the two buildings.

The new facility will bring jobs to Grand Rapids, and its construction alone will involve hundreds of workers.

They say it's too early in the process to disclose how much the entire project will cost.

Construction for Phase II will start at the end of 2019 and is expected to be finished in late 2021.

MSU opened the Grand Rapids Research Center in September of 2017.

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