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Fox Chase Cancer Center Controversy Comes To An End

(Fox Chase Cancer Center.  File photo)

(Fox Chase Cancer Center. File photo)

Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A controversy that dragged on in City Hall for more than five years involving the Fox Chase Cancer Center came to a very quiet conclusion this past weekend.

It was back in 2007 that the Fox Chase Cancer Center asked for, and received, permission from the Fairmount Park Commission and City Council to take over some land in neighboring Burholme Park for a long-planned expansion. Park advocates filed a lawsuit against the move and eventually won, and during that battle hospital officials hinted that they may have to move out of the city if they can’t expand.

Now the dispute is finally over, with City Council committee approval this past week for Temple University Health system to purchase the Cancer Center. Chief Financial Officer Robert Lux assured council members that Fox Chase won’t be asking for parkland.

“Any expansion plans in the future, which we hope will be very robust, should be able to be taken care of with the existing property, and not cause us to come back to this committee requesting land or use of land in that park.”

Lux said that’s because Temple already owns Jeanes Hospital, which is adjacent to the cancer center, and which owns acres of land that would be suitable for the center’s expansion needs. The committee approved the issuance of $320 million dollars in bonds by the Hospital and Higher Education Authority of Philadelphia, which Temple would borrow to finance the purchase of Fox Chase.

Approval by the full council is expected.