Kaiser Permanente purchases former Kmart property in Kent

Company will build health care facility

Kaiser Permanente’s primary care facility at 26004 104th Ave. SE on Kent’s East Hill. Kaiser Permanente plans to open a second facility in the Valley after purchasing the former Kmart property along West Valley Highway. COURTESY PHOTO, Kaiser Permanente

Kaiser Permanente’s primary care facility at 26004 104th Ave. SE on Kent’s East Hill. Kaiser Permanente plans to open a second facility in the Valley after purchasing the former Kmart property along West Valley Highway. COURTESY PHOTO, Kaiser Permanente

A Kaiser Permanente primary care, mental health and wellness facility will replace the former Kmart store in Kent.

Kaiser Permanente purchased the 8 acres at 24800 W. Valley Highway in December for $15 million, according to King County property tax records. Kmart closed in 2018 and the site has remained vacant. Kmart opened the store in 1978.

“This purchase is the beginning of an effort by Kaiser Permanente to transform access to health care for the people of Kent and other communities between Seattle and Tacoma,” said Gretchen Benzin, executive director of facilities for Kaiser Permanente Washington, in an emailed statement. “This centrally located property is ideally situated to serve these communities.”

The project is part of the company’s plan to increase access to health care for people in South King County. With continued population growth projected, this new facility will help meet those needs and provide access to primary care, mental health and wellness, according to the statement.

The development is part of the $1 billion investment Kaiser Permanente announced in 2017 to support new and upgraded facilities in Washington. As a leading health care provider, Kaiser Permanente said it is committed to delivering the future of health care, care equity and accessibility for its more than 700,000 members across the state.

A construction timeline remains to be determined, according to a Kaiser Permanente spokesperson. The size of the facility also hasn’t been determined yet.

Kaiser Permanente has a primary care center on Kent’s East Hill at 26004 104th Ave. SE. The company also has clinics in Federal Way, Burien and Renton.

Bill Ellis, city economic development manager, told the Kent City Council at its Jan. 5 meeting that the new health facility would be a good fit with the nearby Kent Station, accesso ShoWare Center and the Maleng Regional Justice Center. He said it also will tie in well with the city’s Meet Me on Meeker project that will include improved streetscape amenities, wider sidewalks, street trees and vegetated buffers, pedestrian signals, pedestrian lighting and street lighting between the new Ethos Apartments and downtown.

The Goodwill Outlet store, which sits south of the former Kmart, will remain, Ellis said.

Oakland, California-based Kaiser Permanente was founded in 1945, according to its website. The company includes Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc., Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and its subsidiaries The Permanente Medical Groups, which is in Washington.

It has more than 12 million members, 39 hospitals, 719 medical offices, 23,000 doctors, 63,000 nurses and 217,000 employees across nine states.

In 2017, Kaiser Permanente acquired Group Health Cooperative and its subsidiaries, which have been caring for members in Washington since 1947. Kaiser Permanente Washington serves more than 710,170 members and supports the health of communities in Northwest Washington, Central Washington, Eastern Washington, the Coastal and Olympic region and Puget Sound. It has 37 medical offices across the state.

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

City of Kent dedicates Diego’s Field at West Fenwick Park

Futsal field named after Kent Police Officer Diego Moreno

Stock photo
Face coverings again recommended for indoor public settings

Regardless of vaccination status, says Public Health – Seattle & King County

Firearm violence in King County on upward trend

King County prosecutors note a backlog in court cases, point to the pandemic as the reason why.

Mirror file photo
Federal Way Police to conduct emphasis patrols to mitigate recent rise in violent crime

Extra patrols to last for 90 day period near Pacific Highway South, Westway neighborhood

Stock photo
Fireworks calls in Kent drop by 6.5% compared to last year

358 calls this year about fireworks; 383 in 2020

State Patrol commemorates trooper killed in 1987 Kent crash

Clifford Hansell died in downtown collision while responding to an earlier crash

Expect delays in Kent along S. 277th Street for bridge replacement

From July 26 to November: King County to replace 70-year-old structure in Green River Valley

King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn and his challengers, Kim-Khanh Van, Chris Franco, and Ubax Gardheere. Courtesy photos
King County Council District 9 candidates make pitches to voters

Two among Dunn, Franco, Gardheere and Van will advance from Aug. 3 primary

Most Read