St. Joseph Hospital Site Reclaimed by Local Ownership


The property that was occupied by Saint Joseph’s Hospital but remained dormant after its demolition has new local ownership.

The Greater Ottumwa Development Foundation (a nonprofit development arm of Greater Ottumwa Partners in Progress), in a collaborative partnership with the Ottumwa Legacy Foundation, The City of Ottumwa, and Wapello County announced that a deal has been reached with Lifepoint Health (parent company of Ottumwa Regional Health Center) and 312 E Alta Vista LLC (Blackbird Investments) for the purchase of the 10-acre lot of 312 E Alta Vista, formerly known as St. Joseph Hospital.

The site has been a center point of conversation in Ottumwa since 2015 when the property was purchased by Blackbird Investments of Des Moines, IA with the intention of creating a new market-rate housing development. Although the hospital was demolished in 2019, the lot has remained vacant – even though talks have been ongoing through the years, by multiple local entities, with both Blackbird
and Lifepoint Health in an effort to regain control of the property.

Over the course of the last nine months, Ottumwa Regional Health Center CEO William Kiefer pushed forward the possibility of finalizing the purchase of the property.

“Ottumwa Regional is delighted to have joined forces with the partnering group to complete the sale of the Alta Vista property.  We recognize the importance of the property for future development opportunities and as a partner and servants of the community of Ottumwa, we could not be happier to have been a part of making this transaction a reality.” Ottumwa Regional Health Center CEO William Kiefer

According to Greater Ottumwa Partners in Progress Executive Director Marc Roe, this purchase is a monumental win for Wapello County.

“This property has been a topic for Ottumwa for years and so many people have worked tirelessly to bring this deal home, so to speak. With the assistance of William (Kiefer) and our unified partnerships with the Ottumwa Legacy Foundation, City of Ottumwa, and Wapello County, we’re able to see the purchase on this land come to fruition. As housing is one of the keys to economic growth in our area, securing this property has been paramount to growing the community and filling a noticeable gap in our housing inventory. This is a shining example of our partners working together and working toward a common goal, and I don’t see it stopping here.” Marc Roe, CEO of Greater Ottumwa Partners in Progress

While the long-term goal of the partnership is to ensure the property is developed in accordance with the needs of the community, while simultaneously maintaining the integrity of the surrounding neighborhoods, GOPIP says the execution will require patience. The goal is to work with Mission 500 to define parameters and goals for the development of the area.

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