A North Texas dentist has purchased the old Forest Avenue Hospital building on Martin Luther King Boulevard with plans to turn it into a community health clinic.
Dr. Michelle Morgan grew up in the neighborhood and said she wanted to give back by providing service to the area where health care is scarce.
“My idea by looking at it was just clean it up, paint it, put some new floors in and just open it as it was,” Morgan said. “But that of course was before I entered the building and saw that it was totally gutted.”
The hospital building at 2516 Martin Luther King Boulevard was first named Forest Avenue for the street that was later renamed for the civil rights leader. In the early 1960s, the hospital was a place for African American doctors and patients during segregation.
The building has been vacant since 1984 and the revival project has become much more expensive that Morgan first expected. The cost may approach $5 million. Morgan said she has raised about half that, including $500,000 from the Real Estate Council.
“It would be a bit daunting by myself but I’m not by myself, which is really nice,” Morgan said. “Many organizations have come on board to participate in making this building a Class A medical building.”
Dallas City Council members have praised Morgan’s effort. She said an Economic Development Grant from the City of Dallas is pending.