Dallas County Judge Jim Foster is leading the campaign for a $747 million bond issue that would finance the replacement of the existing Parkland Hospital.

The “Vote for Parkland” committee last week launched the campaign to win voter approval of the November ballot issue that has been in the planning stages for years.

As the top elected official in Dallas County, Foster leads the county commissioners who approved submission of the bond proposal to voters.

If it is passed, Dallas County would build a new 862-bed hospital across the street from the existing Parkland. The old building would be used for outpatient services, diagnostic treatments, and other services. 

The new hospital is expected to cost $1.27 billion with $150 million in philanthropic funding, $250 million in current cash reserves, and $100 million in future cash going toward the new campus, along with the proposed bond money. Two Dallas families recently pledged $75 million toward the project.

The historic hospital, where President John F. Kennedy died in 1963, is extremely crowded, taking patients from throughout the Dallas metro area who lack insurance.

The hospital is considered one of the best in the country because it serves as the teaching hospital for the respected University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.

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