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Bids in on building of outpatient clinic

– The contract for construction of a new Veterans Affairs outpatient clinic in Fort Wayne will be announced in early 2013, according to local officials.

The VA Northern Indiana Health Care System did not know how many bids were submitted for the clinic, which VA will rent.

On the drawing board for about two years, the 27,000-square-foot clinic will be placed in an existing building within a 5-mile radius of the VA Medical Center at Lake Avenue and Randallia Drive.

The clinic had been described as an annex for mental health services, including treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder and substance abuse. VA officials say it is now being called the Fort Wayne Outpatient Clinic.

The clinic originally was supposed to be ready for use in 2015. VA later moved the opening to as early as 2013, but the target has switched back to 2015.

Congress approved $2.85 million for the project. That does not include rent that VA will pay to the private developer over 20 years.