Dr. James Munson was the first hospital superintendent, serving until 1924. Under Munson’s supervision, patients were handled much differently than many people would guess. The use of restraints and other patient abuses were strictly forbidden. He operated by providing patients with comfort, pleasure, and even vocational training (including furniture construction, fruit canning, sewing, and other trades).
After Munson’s retirement, the James Decker Munson Hospital was established on the grounds in 1926. It would be later replaced by the Munson Medical Center in the 1950s. At the time of the closure, portions of the land were split between Munson Hospital, the Pavilions, and Garfield Township. The final closure in 1989 resulted in a loss of over 200 jobs to the local economy.
The community struggled to decide on what to do with the property over the next decade. In 1993, the property was transferred to the Grand Traverse Commons Redevelopment Corporation. Several redevelopment plans were proposed but nothing came to fruition until the Minervini Group negations in the year 2000.