Medical office building OKed for Taylorville, Ill.

State approval of a $12 million medical office building next to Taylorville Memorial Hospital means construction could begin this summer, the hospital's chief executive said Wednesday.

CEO Dan Raab said construction contracts will be finalized in the next few weeks after the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board's 4-0 vote Tuesday in favor of the office building, which will be rented exclusively to Springfield Clinic doctors who are based in Taylorville.

The two-story building could be completed by late summer 2009, Raab said.

Taylorville Memorial is operated by Memorial Health System, the Springfield-based not-for-profit organization that will pay for and own the new building.

The 40,000-square-foot structure, to be known as Springfield Clinic Taylorville, will provide updated space for at least nine primary-care doctors and other health-care providers, Raab said.

The availability of the new space also will help the hospital recruit doctors, he said.

The building will be constructed immediately west of the hospital on vacant land and land that is being used for parking.

The project will include an enclosed corridor that connects the new building to the 25-bed hospital.

Doctors will move into the new offices from two one-story buildings on the hospital's campus that are 30 to 40 years old, as well as from another building the clinic rents a few blocks away, Raab said.

Taylorville Memorial plans to buy one of the existing office buildings on its campus from the business partnership that owns it.

That building then would be torn down to make room for a separate multimillion-dollar upgrade of the hospital's outpatient areas and a new main entrance as part of plans that would require state approval.