Henry Ford plans to expand Detroit outpatient center; popular fitness center closes

A popular fitness center in the New Center area of Detroit will permanently close as part of Henry Ford Health System’s plans to expand health care services to the Henry Ford Medical Center-Second Avenue, officials said.

FitnessWorks, which has been managed by Midtown Health under Henry Ford ownership and closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, will not reopen. The 41,000-square-foot fitness center was located on the medical center’s first and second floors at the corner of 6525 Second Ave. and Milwaukee Avenue.

In a statement, Debra Siena, president of Midtown Health, said the company is looking to find a new home for the fitness center to serve its 2,400 members.

“We wish to thank Henry Ford Health System for entrusting in us for managing FitnessWorks and being their community partner,” Siena said.

FitnessWorks offered standard cardio-based workout equipment and weights, but also access to a lap pool and aquatic exercise programming for seniors along with access to racquetball and basketball courts. Classes included spinning, yoga, Pilates, Zumba, African dance, step, ballroom dance and tai chi.

Bob Riney, Henry Ford’s president of health care operations and COO, said the health system is helping Midtown Health find an alternative fitness center opportunity in Detroit for the membership.

“We are grateful to Midtown Health for their professional stewardship managing FitnessWorks and the membership who used the facility for their health and wellness needs over the years,” Riney said. “We’re also appreciative of Mayor (Mike) Duggan and City Councilwoman Mary Sheffield for supporting us in our ongoing Midtown expansion and commitment to meeting the needs of our patients and the community.”

Henry Ford’s outpatient center will be expanded to include physical therapy, rehab, cardiac rehab and cardiology to meet patient demand.

“While we anticipate the pandemic will continue to impact our overall operations in the months ahead, we are focused on investing in important areas where we are seeing increased demand for our services,” Riney said.

The medical center originally opened in 1996 under the name William Clay Ford Center for Athletic Medicine, in honor of William Clay Ford, the late owner of the Detroit Lions. The facility was renamed Henry Ford Medical Center-Second Avenue last year after Henry Ford opened its new $37 million sports medicine center as part of the Henry Ford Detroit Pistons Performance Center two blocks away.

— to www.crainsdetroit.com

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