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05/09/2003 07:00:00

Caltech to Purchase St. Luke Medical Center Site

PASADENA, Calif. -- The California Institute of Technology has entered into a binding agreement to purchase the property and buildings of the former St. Luke Medical Center in northeast Pasadena from the facility's owner, Tenet Healthcare Corporation. The terms of the sale, scheduled to close in late June, have not been finalized. The hospital was closed in May 2002 because of declining utilization.

The property, located four miles from the Caltech campus, will eventually be used to augment Caltech's research mission and other related activities. It is not expected to be used for classrooms or for teaching purposes.

The original building is an important part of Pasadena history. Built in 1933, St. Luke's Spanish-style dome and fa├žade look much the same today as when the hospital opened. St. Luke's manicured lawns, terrazzo floors, and wide, winding stairways epitomize the elegance and sophistication of Pasadena's architecture.

"Caltech is excited about the fact that we've been able to identify a substantial piece of property in Pasadena that gives us the opportunity to contemplate strategic research initiatives that otherwise would be limited by our current facilities. This historically significant facility allows us to think very differently about the future of Caltech," said David Baltimore, Caltech president.

"Tenet's goal has been to find a buyer that would preserve this important architectural landmark in the Pasadena community, and we're delighted that Caltech has made that commitment. This property has an important tradition in the community that is matched by its new owner, said Trevor Fetter, Tenet president.

Opened in 1933 by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange, St. Luke was one of the first hospitals in the San Gabriel Valley. Tenet purchased the facility in 1997. Because of its age and physical inability to adapt the building to modern hospital requirements, it lost business in recent years to much larger nearby facilities.

Founded in 1891, Caltech has an enrollment of some 2,000 students, and a faculty of about 280 professorial members, 65 research members, and some 560 postdoctoral scholars. The Institute has more than 20,000 alumni. Caltech employs a staff of more than 2,400 on campus and 4,800 at JPL.

Over the years, 30 Nobel Prizes and four Crafoord Prizes have been awarded to faculty members and alumni. Forty-seven Caltech faculty members and alumni have received the National Medal of Science; and eight alumni (two of whom are also trustees), two additional trustees, and one faculty member have won the National Medal of Technology. Since 1958, 14 faculty members have received the annual California Scientist of the Year award. On the Caltech faculty there are 82 fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and on the faculty and Board of Trustees, 71 members of the National Academy of Sciences and 45 members of the National Academy of Engineering.

Tenet Healthcare Corporation, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates 114 acute care hospitals with 27,765 beds and numerous related health care services. Tenet and its subsidiaries employ approximately 116,500 people serving communities in 16 states. Tenet's name reflects its core business philosophy: the importance of shared values among partners -- including employees, physicians, insurers and communities -- in providing a full spectrum of health care. Tenet can be found on the World Wide Web at


Caltech Jill Perry Media Relations Director (626) 395-3226

Tenet Healthcare Corporation Steven Campanini Director, Media Relations, Corporate Communications (805) 563-6838

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