An open house will be held at the former Shop ‘n’ Save building on North Grand on Thursday, March 23, beginning at 4 p.m. A ribbon cutting for Medics First of Springfield will take place at 4:20, followed by a Chamber on Tap networking event from 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Redevelopment of the former grocery store at 200 North Grand Ave. began in March 2022. Advanced Medical Transport of Springfield, the parent company of Medics First, purchased the building in November 2021 to serve as the new headquarters for the nonprofit ambulance company. The company is currently headquartered at 1600 Taylor Ave.

Memorial Health will lease 10,000 square feet of the building and is in the process of renovating it as part of a partnership with the Mennonite College of Nursing at Illinois State University to train nursing students. The nursing program plans to expand its enrollment by 48 students per year, educate those students in Springfield and hire faculty for the satellite campus. The first Springfield class is expected to start in August.

Ward 5 Ald. Lakeisha Purchase said, “This was my very first project that I worked on (after joining city council) to ensure that Medics First was able to move into this building. It’s changing the landscape of the North Grand corridor, and this is the perfect start to have Medics First and the Illinois State nursing program in the same building.”

Purchase said that she plans to work with Medics First on an educational video series to help the public understand what happens when someone is transported from their home to a hospital or from one facility to another. “I know that Medics First is planning to be active in the neighborhood in different ways, letting community groups use their building or offering CPR classes and that type of thing,” she said.

Farnsworth Group was the project architect and O’Shea builders served as the general contractor for renovation of the 44,000-square-foot building.

There is no cost to attend this Chamber on Tap event. Complimentary food and beverages will be available from Nelson’s Catering.