On Tuesday, Girard Medical Center officials and various other southeast Kansas representatives broke ground on a multi-million dollar expansion and renovation project at the hospital.

On Tuesday, Girard Medical Center officials and various other southeast Kansas representatives broke ground on a multi-million dollar expansion and renovation project at the hospital.
The $7.1 million construction project will add 30,000 square feet to the hospital — doubling its size — and will renovate 6,000 square feet of the existing facility.
For Rep. Bob Grant, one feature of the project stands out among the rest.
“It’s going to be nice to know where the front door is,” said Grant, D-Cherokee.
The plans for the project include increasing parking space, revamping the main hospital entry and lobby, new construction of the Physical, Speech and Occupational Therapies departments, as well as the Cardiac Rehabilitation, Surgery, Respiratory Therapy, Pharmacy and Medical Records departments.
In addition, the expansion plans include the new construction of 12 private patient rooms in the Medical/Surgical Unit and four new private patient rooms in the Intensive Care Unit.
Kenny Boyd, GMC CEO, said the project “kicks off our future.”
“With this, we are moving forward into the next chapter of our history,” Boyd said.
The project, set to be completed by summer or fall of next year, will be paid for through the hospital’s general revenue bonds, not through any type of tax increase. The fact that it’s being done at all during these current economic times was a cause for applause during the groundbreaking ceremony.
“To be able to pull this project off at this point in time is quite a deal,” said Dale Coomes, GMC board chair. “It’s a little scary, but we have a lot of faith in our community and we have an extreme amount of faith in our management team, our medical staff and our employees, and we believe this is going to be successful for everyone.”
Grant and Sen. Bob Marshall also praised the GMC leadership for taking on the project during this national recession.
“We’re in a time of uncertain economic conditions for the country and for Kansas,” said Marshall, R-Fort Scott. “For Girard Medical Center to be making this advancement at this time... I think is wonderful and exciting.”
“For Girard and the hospital to take on this kind of project in these economic times,” Grant said, “is really a great effort on their part. I wish them all the best.”
Crossland Construction was selected as the general contractor for the project. The project is described as a “design build” project and the architectural firm working with Crossland is Wichita-based McCluggage, Van Sickle and Perry.
Girard Mayor Maurice Harley said the GMC project is not only a major step forward for the hospital, but for the entire Girard community.
“The changes to the GMC will consist of more than the expansion and renovation of the existing hospital complex,” he said. “The exterior changes in the appearance of the facility will be a great example of the effort to improve our community. If all of our citizens and businesses catch a part of this organizational pride and invest that back into the city, then we will truly be a great place to call home.”