Town officials are celebrating Rex Healthcare's announcement of plans to build a 50-bed hospital at the corner of N.C. 55 and Avent Ferry Road, where Rex has an urgent care center and other services.
The official announcement at a press conference Feb. 19 represents a major milestone in Holly Springs' years-long effort to win approval for a hospital.
The most recent bump in the road toward a hospital occurred when Novant Health challenged state regulators' approval of Rex's plan.
Novant had maintained that it should be allowed to build a hospital here instead. Novant dropped further challenge after the state Court of Appeals ruled against it.
"We're sorry that it took such a long time," said Dale Jenkins, chairman of Rex Healthcare's Board of Trustees. "But we know that good days are ahead, and we appreciate all the good support that we had from each of you."
Mayor Dick Sears has been a vocal and persistent supporter of efforts to bring a hospital to Holly Springs and a critic of the slow process for approval.
"We celebrate today," Mayor Dick Sears said at the press conference, noting the hospital would benefit not just Holly Springs, but Fuquay-Varina and an area of 150,000 people.
"Our campaign has always been about one thing, [that] we need excellent healthcare within a short distance drive," he said.
Sears and Fuquay-Varina Mayor John Byrne cited the cooperation between the two towns in pressing the case for a hospital in southern Wake County.
Rex Healthcare indicated that construction of the hospital is several years away.
David Strong, president of Rex Healthcare, said hospital officials would gather information about community needs to determine whether updates are needed to the 4-year-old hospital plan.