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Location DB > United States > Tennessee > Memphis > Baptist Memorial Hospital (Downtown)
Baptist Memorial Hospital (Downtown)
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 Database Info
created by lordpook on 4/17/2005 2:32 AM
last modified by Emperor Wang on 12/20/2016 8:25 AM
Publically Viewable Publically Viewable
This location has been labeled as Demolished, and therefore can be viewed by anyone.
Consists primarily of a modern (well, not anymore) hospital tower in the following shape: >-< . It has been interconnected with 6 other hospital facilities, such as office buildings. The oldest part of the complex is the 1912 Main hospital. The Main has 2 other buildings connected to it. They form the Physicians and Surgeons building. Those 3 are connected to the main part of the hospital, the tower. The P&S building, along with 2 other connected structure, were imploded in may, while the main tower was imploded in nov. 2005.
 Basic Information
Type: Building
Status: Demolished
Accessibility: Moderate
Recommendation: too late, it was recently demolished
 Physical Information
Poplar Avenue, in the medical district
Memphis, Tennessee
United States
Owner: The University of Tennessee
  • See a map of this location
  •  Hazards
  • asbestos
  • rust
  • unsafe flooring
  • air quality
  • mold in stairways, pigeon roosts, construction crews
  •  Interesting Features
    -6 medical buildings (now 3, 3 recently imploded!), the oldest was built in 1912 and imploded on May 8, 2005, while the largest portion was imploded on nov. 6, 2005
    -all are connected into one 1.2 million square foot hospital complex
    -Elvis Presly was pronounced dead here in the emergency room (though I couldn't find the morgue)
    -a chapel
    -lots of medical devices - large lasers, etc. hung from ceilings
    -a power plant
    -snack bar
    -laboratory space
    -emergency room
    -fenced-in 'park' area on one of the lower roofs (demolished)
    -marble elevator lobby on 1st floor
    -2 stories of power/water/air/elevator equiptment in a rooftop structure
    -good view from roof
     Security Measures
  • fences
  • locked gates
  • wooden boarding
  •  Historical Dates
    Built: 1912
    Closed: 2001
     Required Equipment
  • flashlight
  • breathing mask
  • gloves
  •  Recommended Equipment
    camera, elvis seance materials
    To the east of the UT-Memphis campus is the Baptist Memorial Hospital complex. The Baptist Memorial Hospital opened in 1912 and has since been added onto over the years to form what was the largest private hospital in the United States by the 1970’s.[10] The idea for the hospital was formed at the Shelby County Baptist Association meeting in 1906. Dr. H.P. Hurt proposed a Baptist-sponsored hospital that was “open to all who are sick and in pain regardless of their creed or faith.” By 1908, they had raised a portion of the funds and made arrangements with the Physicians and Surgeons College (one of the five medical schools that merged to form UT-Memphis) to deed a lot on Madison for the new hospital along with $25,000 for a new building.[11] This original building has been engulfed by additions from 1918 to 1938 and in 1946. [12] Much of this older portion of the hospital still is visible on Madison and the western facade between Madison and Monroe. In the early 1950’s, a 13-story addition was placed on the east side of the hospital and two doctor’s office towers were constructed across Dunlap and Madison. Designed by Walk C. Jones and Walk C. Jones, Jr., this new addition to the hospital, completed in 1955, is the Madison Avenue part of the X-shaped building that stands today.[13]

    By the early 1960’s, the hospital needed to expand again. It purchased the land across Madison, where Russwood Park, a professional baseball park, was located prior to being destroyed by fire, for another medical office tower. In addition, the footprint of the expansion was already in place for the extension of new hospital to form an X-shape, facing Union Avenue. The hospital had planned for this expansion to occur over a 20-year period to become a 1400-bed hospital, however they were turning away 600 patients a month. In 1968, they opened the 19-story Union Avenue wing and closed some wards in the 1912 original portion of the old hospital, arriving at a total of 1750 beds.[14]

    Despite all of this growth, by the 1970s, Baptist Hospital announced its intention to develop a satellite hospital in the eastern suburbs of Memphis, following the trend of Methodist Hospital opening in Whitehaven and St. Joseph on Park Avenue. At the time Baptist officials insisted these new facilities were “strictly satellites” and its major medical and surgical facilities would remain in the Medical Center.[15] Although Mayor Wyeth Chandler and several council members tried to block the building of the satellite hospital on Walnut Grove, stating that a hospital was need in Frayser-Bartlett-Raleigh area rather than East Memphis, Baptist Hospital moved ahead with its plans. The addition of these new facilities was also over neighborhood objections to the traffic, noise, and increased development pressures.[16] In 1987, the hospital expanded its satellite hospital with a $16.5 million building program and began closing beds in the Medical Center location, still stating they were not abandoning their commitment to the downtown medical community but just “moving beds to where they are most needed” while transforming the empty space to research labs.[17] However, in 1998, the hospital announced its $172.5 million expansion of the Walnut Grove hospital thereby making its intentions known of leaving the downtown area in favor of its suburban patients.[18] Today, the closed Baptist Memorial Hospital and adjoining office tower sits at the center of the Medical District awaiting its fate as the site of the new Memphis Biotech Foundation.[19]

    [update: the last step of the long demolition took place on November 6, 2005, when the main tower was imploded.]
     Media Coverage
    http://www.upn30me...-B817-C3D3126E7DC6 (contains implosion video)
     Future Plans
    2 auxillary buildings were imploded on May 8, 2005. The main building was imploded on Nov. 6, 2005 The site will be used for a multi-million dollar UT research facillity. The architecture isn't anything special (though the already demolished Physicians and Surgeons Building was old an rather nice), so I don't mind the new facility being built.

    Update: "A piece of Memphis history came crashing to the ground today. The two eight-story side buildings of the old Baptist Hospital were imploded early this morning. Eyewitness News was there early Sunday morning to watch the whole thing come down. It took only twenty seconds to bring down both side buildings at the hospital. Eyewitnesses say it was like an avalanche. There was a big cloud of smoke and then everything just went down. Gary Carter had this to say about the implosion. “I was born on the eighth floor of the main building. My mom called me yesterday and said, you know they’re blowing the hospital up, so I got down here, me and my brother, and it was pretty impressive. I felt the earth move under my feet.” The main tower of old Baptist Hospital is scheduled to come down later this year. This is all being done to make room for a new large research center co-run by the University of Tennessee and Baptist Memorial Hospital. The new UT-Baptist Research Park will take about ten years to complete. The focus will be on developing new medical technology and treatments. The research park will also bring five-thousand new jobs to the area."

    Implosion footage: (note that this footage does not show the second implosion, which destroyed the gutted red structure on the right; the red structure in the foreground on the right is active and was not touched)

    Memphis filmmaker J.M. McCarthy hopes to preserve, brick by brick, the room where Elvis was pronounced dead. We'll see.
    [update- didn't happen]

    Add your own story
     Photo Galleries
    Click to view gallery
    One Man, 6 Buildings: a lordpook exclusive (part 1)
    Sat, Apr 16th, 2005
    posted by lordpook
    50 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    One Man, 6 Buildings (part 2)
    Sat, Apr 16th, 2005
    posted by lordpook
    55 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Final Implosion
    Mon, Nov 7th, 2005
    posted by lordpook
    4 pictures

    Add your own photos

    Mark all galleries as Seen

    Front of the Complex
    Sat, Apr 16th, 2005
    posted by lordpook

    Downtown from the Main Roof
    Sat, Apr 16th, 2005
    posted by lordpook
     Web Links

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     Moderator Rating
    The moderator rating is a neutral rating of the content quality, photography, and coolness of this location.

    Category Rating
    Photography 7 / 10
    Coolness 9 / 10
    Content Quality 9 / 10
    This location's validation is current. It was last validated by Emperor Wang on 12/20/2016 8:25 AM.

     Latest Changes
  • on Dec 20 16 at 8:25, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Dec 20 16 at 8:25, Emperor Wang changed the following: Display Name
  • on Dec 25 08 at 3:50, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Dec 24 08 at 9:26, lordpook changed the following: Status
  • on Nov 10 06 at 18:52, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Nov 10 06 at 18:52, Emperor Wang deleted panorama TEST
  • on Nov 10 06 at 3:31, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Nov 7 05 at 17:45, lordpook changed the following: Notes for Mods, History, Status, Interesting Features, Recommendation, Security Measures, Future Plans, Description
  • on Nov 7 05 at 3:08, lordpook updated gallery Final Implosion
  • on Nov 7 05 at 3:07, lordpook updated gallery Final Implosion
  •  Forum Threads about this Location
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     SubjectStarted ByRepliesViewsLast Post
    You must log in for this feature to work.Implosion DateSlickis212629/26/2005 6:53 AM by Slickis
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