Phoenix Designates Park Central, Midtown Phoenix as Newest Bioscience Hub

PHOENIX (April 12, 2023) – In her State of the City address on April 12, Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego announced that Park Central and midtown Phoenix have been designated as the newest Bioscience Hub in the community, known as the Phoenix Medical Quarter, Global Advancement of Health and Education.

The designation recognizes the influx of healthcare, bioscience and education into the midtown region in general and Park Central specifically, and along with the city’s other two Bioscience Hubs — Phoenix Bioscience Core and Discovery Oasis — forming a “healthcare triangle” of research.

In the past few years, several significant bioscience, healthcare and education initiatives have come to fruition in the central city, including:

  • The new Virginia G. Piper Creighton University Health Sciences Campus at Park Central, where more than 900 people annually are educated to become doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals. Creighton’s Phoenix campus opened in 2021, offering students almost 200,000 SF of state-of-the-art learning environments including simulation space. In the school’s nine labs, learners gain hands-on experience with standardized patients, home care environments and more. The campus includes a medical school, nursing school, a pharmacy, occupational therapy and physical therapy school and separate schools for physician assistants and emergency medical services personnel.
  • Significant expansion on the Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center campus, by Barrow Neurological Institute. Barrow, one of the top 15 neuroscience hospitals in the world, has officially opened the state-of-the-art Barrow Neuroplex. On the heels of this, they will soon be opening the new global headquarters for the Ivy Brain Tumor Center and are also planning to build an innovative new research laboratory at Park Central.
  • An influx of bioscience, healthcare and education entities, including the WearTech Applied Research Center and RadNet imaging clinic at Park Central, Alliant School of Nursing, WCUI Smith Chason, DMG Children’s Rehabilitative Services and several others at Park Central. 

As part of the designation, the City of Phoenix will be working on a reinvention of 3rd Avenue to pull together Park Central, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center and Barrow Neurological Institute to create a dynamic corridor to promote the well-being of citizens and the advancement of bioscience. Third Avenue will feature shaded walkways, integration of art, and a safe environment for students, faculty, researchers, clinicians, and most importantly patients and their families, while assuring vehicular access to Barrow, St. Joseph’s and Park Central.

“I am proud that our City is home to the Phoenix Medical Quarter. Phoenix is an emerging bioscience market and we are consistently number one in life science job growth. This is good news for people who live in our city, who want the best possible health care,” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. “Healthcare education, life sciences and research are crucial and the impact and leadership of the Phoenix Medical Quarter will accelerate the work that is already happening in the region.”  

“The Phoenix Medical Quarter is exactly what our community needs. There has been tremendous growth at Park Central with the variety of healthcare education, technology development and centers for care and the advancements at Barrow Neurological Center and Dignity that it only seems natural for this area to become a Bioscience Hub that is connected and creates an environment that fosters innovation,” said Phoenix City Council District 4 Councilmember Laura Pastor.  

“We are very pleased to receive this designation and excited about the impact it will have on healthcare in our community,” said Sharon Harper, Chairman and CEO of Plaza Companies, the company spearheading the Park Central revitalization effort alongside Holualoa Companies. “The focus on bioscience will save lives, create jobs and help continue the rapid revitalization we’re seeing at Park Central and in midtown Phoenix.”

Plaza Companies and Tucson’s Holualoa Companies have teamed up to redevelop Park Central into a vibrant destination, which once was the city’s first official large-scale shopping mall. Park Central has developed a particular focus on bioscience over the past few years with the addition of Creighton University as well as an influx of bioscience companies to the project. 

Additionally, Barrow President and CEO Michael T. Lawton, MD recently announced that the Institute is embarking on another forward-thinking research initiative that will provide renewed hope to patients by exploring the greatest frontier in neuroscience—the mysteries of the mind. 

This initiative will include a research-centric building at Park Central as part of the Phoenix Medical Quarter, where clinicians and scientists will focus on “opening minds and saving lives” through regenerative neuroscience, robotics, brain-computer interfaces, and other next-generation technologies.

“The Phoenix Medical Quarter will be known as a place of innovation and advancement of the medical field, and it is the perfect region for Barrow to continue to expand as we look to explore the mysteries of the mind,” said Barrow Neurological Institute President and CEO Michael T. Lawton, MD. 

“Interprofessional education is a highly valued standard at Creighton University for academic learning and clinical training,” said President Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, S.J., Ph.D. “The formation of the Phoenix Medical Quarter will spur new opportunities for our students across the various medical disciplines to better educate Arizona’s next generation of medical professionals. Creighton is excited to be part of this growth and development and we cannot wait to get to work on new partnerships to advance medical education and care.” 

“Collaboration is what drives transformation and innovation and Dignity Health St. Joseph’s is proud to be part of this collaboration at the Phoenix Medical Quarter. The research and healthcare education that will take place in this region will advance the future of healthcare services and elevate care for our community,” said Chief Executive Officer, Dignity Health Arizona Central and West Valley Market, Gabrielle Finley-Hazle.

The new Park Central includes 500,000 square feet of Class A creative office and retail space available for lease with the ability to accommodate tenants ranging from 3,500 square feet to more than 100,000 square feet in size. It features exclusive tenant patios, on-site restaurants and amenities, a stunning mid-century modern design, 15- to 25-foot ceilings, convenient bike path and light rail access and ample parking. For more information on the project, visit

About Plaza Companies

With offices in Peoria, Scottsdale and Tucson, Plaza Companies is a full-service real estate firm specializing in the management, leasing and development of medical office and commercial office properties, technology and bioscience facilities, mixed-use properties and senior housing communities. Since 1982, Plaza Companies has established a proud track record as a competitive, connected and conscientious real estate firm with partnerships throughout the industries it serves. For more information, visit

About Holualoa Companies

Holualoa Companies is a real estate investment firm focused on the successful acquisition, repositioning, redevelopment and disposition of real estate assets. Headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, with offices in Phoenix, Santa Monica, Hawaii and Paris, its investments span the United States and Europe and include office, retail, industrial, multi-family, hotel and mixed-use investment properties. Holualoa is an experienced investor for its own account and on behalf of a select group of private investors. For more information, visit

About Creighton University

Creighton University, based in Omaha, Nebraska, is one of 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the U.S. It enrolls 4,446 undergraduates and 4,464 graduate and professional students among nine schools and colleges. No other university its size offers students such a comprehensive academic environment with personal attention from faculty-mentors. Visit:

About Barrow Neurological Institute

Since our doors opened as a regional specialty center in 1962, we have grown into one of the premier destinations in the world for neurology and neurosurgery. Our experienced, highly skilled, and comprehensive team of neurological specialists can provide you with a complete spectrum of care–from diagnosis through outpatient neurorehabilitation–under one roof.

About Dignity Health in Arizona

Dignity Health in Arizona is anchored by 8 outstanding hospitals in Arizona: St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Chandler Regional Medical Center, Mercy Gilbert Medical Center, St. Joseph’s Westgate Medical Center, Arizona General Hospital – Laveen, Arizona General Hospital – Mesa, Yavapai Regional Medical Center – East, and Yavapai Regional Medical Center – West.

From this foundation, Dignity Health in Arizona has expanded into a comprehensive health care system, which includes clinics, specialty hospitals, urgent cares, freestanding emergency departments, insurance providers, an accountable care organization and other clinical partnerships. The Dignity Health Medical Group includes hundreds of physicians in Arizona and a wide range of specialties. Dignity Health is part of CommonSpirit, one of the nation’s largest health care systems.

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Whether you are looking to us for management, leasing or development services, we can help you find the perfect space. With over 40 years of experience, you can trust Plaza Companies to assist you with your real estate needs.

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