If all goes according to Mike Carouba's plan, modern medical offices, shops and restaurants could within a few years replace the strawberry patches and defunct golf driving range at Harney and West lanes.
Carouba, a local commercial real estate broker, submitted plans this spring to the city of Lodi for a 30-acre medical and retail complex, anchored by a Sutter Gould medical office.
"I looked into the field and Sutter seemed to be the class of the field," he said, noting Lodi has a "dearth of medical office space."
We've talked to a lot of people and most people think it's a great use of the property."
A spokesman for Sutter Gould confirmed the nonprofit medical foundation is working on the project, but could not provide specifics for the plan.
Carouba said a purchase agreement has been reached between the land owner FFLP, a local family partnership, and Sutter Gould. The medical office, which he estimated could be roughly 60,000 square-feet and two or three stories, would sit on six acres.
He emphasized no hospital is planned, nor are any giant retailers.
"We're not a power center," he added. "We're not Reynolds Ranch, we're not big box."
Sutter Gould now has four smaller offices in Lodi. Its 18 physicians and two nurse practitioners would move to the new office, along with their support staff, said Craig Baize, the foundation's spokesman.
More than 200 Sutter Gould primary care and specialty doctors provide outpatient services for residents in the Central Valley.
It has offices in Lodi, Stockton and Modesto, among other communities.
Source: Sutter Gould Medical Foundation
Those doctors include primary care physicians and specialists like obstetrician/gynecologists, among others, Baize said.
"It would make it more convenient for our patients to get everything done in one place," he said, noting radiation and lab services would also be provided.
Carol Farron, spokeswoman for Lodi Memorial Hospital, said the project would not be a direct competitor.
"To my understanding, it's just doctor offices," Farron said. "They're two different things. Medical offices are not hospitals."
An environmental review, annexation to the city and General Plan amendment, among other approvals, are needed before the proposal can become a reality.
Carouba estimated the earliest the medical office could open would be about two years.
The development would be north of the city's much debated greenbelt area. The proposed development is now designated within the city's "residential reserve," a place city planners have marked for future growth.