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Site of Sleep Train Arena to become new home to California Northstate University teaching hospital

The Kings organization donated the arena and 35 acres of land on which it sits in North Natomas for development of phase one of the project.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The old home of the Sacramento Kings, formerly the Sleep Train Arena, will soon be the site of the California Northstate University (CNU) medical school and teaching hospital.

The announcement of the development was made during a press conference featuring Kings team owner Vivek Ranadivé and Sacramento city leaders. The Kings organization donated the arena and 35 acres of land on which it sits in North Natomas for development of phase one of the project that includes the medical school and a state-of-the-art teaching hospital.

“With a medical school campus and teaching hospital, this project will serve as a hub of innovation and an economic driver for the entire region,” Ranadivé said.

Future plans for the site could include a nursing program, a dental program, and a pharmaceutical program, according to Sacramento Mayor Pro Tem Angelique Ashby.

“This is an amazing opportunity for the city and an important component to the overall health and well-being of our entire region,” Ashby said.

The project is expected to generate more than $4 billion in regional economic output over the next decade could generate thousands of jobs, according to an economic analysis from Varshney & Associates.

“With today’s announcement, California Northstate University Medical Center takes a giant leap toward fulfilling the visionary expansion of our campus with the construction of a teaching hospital to enhance service to the community and the greater region of Sacramento,” said CNU President and CEO Dr. Alvin Cheung.

CNU has been looking for a home for its teaching hospital for several months. A possible site was originally proposed near the Stonelake Community, off Interstate 5 on West Taron Drive, in Elk Grove. The city planning commission, however, voted 3-0 against the project in February 2021.

In March, chatter began about the CNU teaching hospital finding a home in the city of Rancho Cordova. At the time though, representatives from both CNU and the city of Rancho Cordova said the project was just in its initial stages and nothing firm set.

Rancho Cordova Communications and Public Affairs Director Maria Chacon Kniestedt issued the following statement on the announcement:

"We congratulate California Northstate University for finding a location that best suits their needs as they work toward building a teaching hospital. With the location of their College of Health Sciences in Rancho Cordova, they have been and continue to be a great community partner. We wish them every success."

Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen also issued a statement about CNU's move to the Sleep Train Arena site:

“Elk Grove city leaders did everything we could to assist CNU at their chosen project location and present alternative locations and options for their consideration. Ultimately none of the options presented met their needs. We still believe that this is an important project for the Sacramento region and we wish California Northstate University and the City of Sacramento every success in establishing the project in Natomas. We continue to enjoy a strong working relationship with CNU, and we will do everything we can to support the continued success and growth of the university campus in Elk Grove.”

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