Land donated for LSU clinic

Real estate developer and philanthropist Herbert G. Brown has donated more land for LSU’s North Baton Rouge clinic development off Airline Highway, LSU announced.

The 1.5 acres is adjacent to the clinic and is bounded by McClelland Drive, Glen Oaks Drive, Laca Street and Maplewood Drive. It was recently appraised at approximately $135,000.

Brown previously donated the old Kmart property at 5439 Airline Highway to LSU. LSU built a new $18 million medical clinic on the front part of the lot. The clinic opened in 2009.

The donation was made in memory of his son, H. Graham Brown, who died tragically at age 15.

“I try to do things in his memory and honor,” said Brown, an Opelousas native who lives in Clearwater, Fla. “My wife, Diane, and I want to do all we can for humanity, for children and for schools. We’re just trying to dedicate our lives to helping other people.”

Brown, 89, is the former chairman of the Checkers Restaurant Chain and the developer of furniture stores, pharmacies and Kmarts spread throughout the Southeastern United States.

“This generous donation will be used to help ensure continued, quality health care services for patients in the north Baton Rouge area,” LSU President William L. Jenkins said in a signing ceremony at the LSU System office. “Mr. Brown has shown a steadfast devotion to LSU for many years, a commitment evidenced in his strong support for LSU health care delivery and in his compassionate concern for helping the needy.”

LSU System Director of Facilities Planning Danny Mahaffey said the land would most likely be used for future expansion and parking for clinic patients and administrative staffs.

“The additional land will be critical to accommodating the large numbers of patients who will seek care at the clinic and the new urgent care center next door currently under construction,” Mahaffey said.

Future construction plans for the property include a $3.6 million, 7,500-square-foot addition that will house a radiology suite next door to the existing clinic. That expansion will include an MRI machine as well as a combination retail and chemotherapy pharmacy.

The Kmart building has been renovated and is now the administrative headquarters for the LSU Health Care Services Division that operates LSU’s seven public hospitals in south Louisiana.