CareSource has issued a letter of intent to negotiate with the owners of the Kettering Tower at 40 North Main Street in downtown Dayton to lease office space for about 225 employees, the downtown Dayton-based health insurer said.

CareSource plans new office space downtown

CareSource is planning to lease office space in the Kettering Tower in downtown Dayton for about 225 employees, the company said Wednesday.

One of the city’s largest employers, CareSource is seeking a five-year agreement that would allow the nonprofit health insurer to occupy the third and fourth floors of the 30-story building at 40 North Main St.

CareSource officials said the lease negotiations underscore the company’s commitment to Dayton.

“Downtown Dayton is home to CareSource’s corporate headquarters, and we remain committed to being an anchor for the city,” said Dan McCabe, CareSource’s chief administrator. “We are pleased to be an important economic driver in Dayton and appreciate the support and strong relationships we have with our city leaders.”

The company didn’t provide further details, and a spokesman for the company in charge of leasing at Kettering said he couldn’t comment because the company was bound by a confidentiality agreement.

All toll, CareSource’s four downtown Dayton locations — including Kettering Tower — would support about 2,200 workers. The company has just under 2,000 employees downtown now and a total workforce of 2,500.

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley applauded CareSource’s latest move and said the company remains one of Dayton’s most important corporate citizens.

“Not only are they important to the city and to downtown, but we consider them a partner,” Whaley said. “This new expansion continues to show their commitment not only to the downtown core but also to the entire Dayton region.”

CareSource has experienced explosive growth in membership in recent years, which was the impetus for the new lease negotiations, the company said.

“The Kettering Tower space, which can accommodate approximately 225 staff, addresses our immediate and near term needs as we continue to manage growth,” McCabe said. “CareSource’s significant growth is a result of our success in the Health Insurance Marketplace, MyCare Ohio, the launch of Medicare Advantage, Medicaid Expansion and our recent notice of intent to be awarded a Medicaid contract from the state of Georgia.”

The company introduced its CareSource Just4Me commercial health plans on the online federal exchange in 2013 and expanded enrollment to Indiana and Kentucky last year. CareSource opened for enrollment in West Virginia’s marketplace at the beginning of the month and is projecting total marketplace enrollment in all four states to grow to 100,000.

At the same time, CareSource — also one of the nation’s largest Medicaid managed care providers — has expanded its footprint to Georgia, where it has a managed care contract to begin serving the state’s Medicaid consumers in July next year.

CareSource said it will assess current and future business needs and “redistribute business units” from its corporate headquarters downtown at 40 West Second St. to the Kettering Tower. In addition, some staff hired between now and the second quarter of 2016 will be housed in the new location, the company said.

Plans call for the Kettering Tower space to be renovated in time for CareSource staff to move in next spring.

The addition of the Kettering Tower space would increase the amount of office space CareSource occupies downtown to nearly 600,000 square feet, including its Ballpark Village location in the former WorkFlowOne building at 220 E. Monument Ave.

CareSource leased the Ballpark Village space with capacity for 500 workers in April 2014 and initially renovated the lobby and second and third floors. The second phase of renovation included the first and fourth floors and was completed earlier this fall. Staff will begin occupying the first floor of the building this month, CareSource said.