Swinerton In the News

Swinerton Builders: October 27, 2014

Cambia Grove Opens Here in 2015 as a Hub for Health Care Innovation

Swinerton Builders is the general contractor for Cambia Health Solutions that will open a 9,000-square-foot space in Seattle's Denny Triangle.

A Portland-based insurance company called Cambia Health Solutions will open a 9,000-square-foot space in Seattle's Denny Triangle to serve as a “hub” for encouraging innovation in the health care industry.

The idea is to create a space where startups, venture capitalists, employers and health care providers can meet, work, exchange ideas and develop new ways to meet health care challenges.

The initial partners are UW Medicine, Regence BlueShield and Qliance. An advisory panel of industry experts will help support the hub.

“The city has so many of the right ingredients to create a vibrant health care economic cluster,” said Cambia executive Rob Coppedge. But it still needs help to turn the region into a health care center rivaling Boston or Minneapolis.

“Life sciences people don't know the health services people in this town,” Coppedge said.

Those missed connections could mean missed opportunities.

“We travel around the country to find investments,” Coppedge said of Cambia, which invests in other health care-related firms. “Most of my time is on a plane to somewhere else.”

Coppedge said his company has moved quickly once it decided to develop the hub.

The space will be called Cambia Grove and it will be in the 1800 Ninth office tower, where Amazon.com is the anchor tenant.

Mackenzie is the architect and Swinerton Builders is the general contractor. Cambia Grove will open in the first quarter of 2015.

There's no real model for Cambia Grove — it's not quite an incubator or a chamber of commerce, but rather a hybrid designed to address Seattle's specific needs, Coppedge said.

The space will be mostly used for meetings and events. There will be a few small offices, but Cambia doesn't plan to rent them out.

“There's no membership fee. It's a free space for the community to use,” said Nicole Bell, executive director of Cambia Grove.

No need to wait for an invitation, either.

Bell said anyone who wants to can join Cambia Grove if they simply pledge to uphold its mission: to serve as a catalyst to transform health care, creating a person-focused and economically sustainable system.

“We want to promote next generation of health care solutions,” Bell said.

Practically speaking, that means helping employers and insurers responsibly cut health costs, such as by developing new biomedical devices or using big data to promote wellness.

Bell said ideally Cambia Grove will do for health care “what this region has done for technology, coffee, aerospace and online retail. Bringing complementary elements together will drive improvements in health care products, technology and services to raise the overall quality of care and shift the focus to the consumer.”

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