The Morgan County Health Department is continuing plans for the move to a new home in the coming months.
The health department purchased one of the buildings on the former MacMurray College campus during the auction in November of last year. The former Putnam-Springer building located at the corner of South Clay and East State Streets will serve as the new home.
Morgan County Health Department Administrator Dale Bainter says even though the building is much newer than its current location, there is a significant amount of work that needs to be completed to make the space useful and accessible for use as a health department.
“Those are classrooms, and we are going to be putting in exam rooms. We have to add plumbing to those rooms so that’s a pretty large endeavor. The building needs a new roof so we will be putting a roof on, and as many people have pointed out to me, there’s not a lot of parking at that building. So we will be adding a parking lot to the south of the building so we have access for people to get off the street and easily make their way into the building.”
Bainter says the work to renovate the building will be worth the effort and expense. “It’s a lot more room than we have now. We currently have six thousand square feet that is in a modified old grocery store. It has fit our needs very well but, we will be moving into about twenty thousand square feet so it’s a significant upgrade.”
The health department services have expanded through SIU School of Medicine in the past few years, which has made space a premium in the current location in the former Bills Star Market building located at 345 West State Street.
Bainter says he anticipates renovation work to begin within the next couple of weeks, with an anticipated completion date of January 1st, 2022.