CHAMPAIGN — Moving-in has begun at the new Carle at the Fields medical campus, and there’s more development on the way.
This month, the first of 1,200 Carle administrative support employees began relocating to the first building to open on the Carle health system’s new 210-acre campus at Interstate 57 and Curtis Road.
Still to come, before anyone ever sees a doctor or undergoes a surgery at Carle at the Fields, will be a new hotel (opening this summer) and a 4.1-acre commercial and apartment development (opening later this year).
The new Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton, currently visible from the windows of Carle’s new three-story administrative building, is set to open July 1 with 80 rooms and eight extended stay suites, according to Keith Montgomery, the project manager for hotel developer Horve Hospitality Management.
Green Street Realty, the developer of a pair of identical three-story buildings along Fields South Drive, has started construction with plans to have both buildings done by the fall, according to owner/broker Chris Saunders.
Each of the two Green Street Realty buildings will be 45,000 square feet, and they’ll flank a 10,000-square-foot public plaza intended to be a gathering and community event space, Saunders said.
The buildings will include retail and office spaces for lease on the first floors, plus 56 apartments on the second and third stories. Some apartments will have one bedroom and one bathroom and rent for $1,200 a month, and some will have two bedrooms and two bathrooms and rent for $1,350 to $1,500 a month, he said.
Already, some Carle employees have expressed interest in these apartments so close to where they’ll be working, Saunders said. But this is also going to be a development serving the surrounding neighborhood and broader community.
“I think the goal of this was really to provide amenities for that part of town,” he said. “But there’s obviously a lot of people who will be working on site out there.”
Leases are still being finalized with commercial tenants, Saunders said. He anticipates announcing some of them soon.
“It’s obviously a real exciting deal for us out there,” he said. “We think the area is going to explode with the number of employees in that area.”
♦ ♦ ♦
Carle’s new 340,000-square-foot administrative building is substantially done, and some of the departments set to move in first — among them human resources and marketing — are already there.
Among the last to move in later this spring will be hundreds of Health Alliance Medical Plans employees currently working in leased space at Urbana’s Lincoln Square.
Other than job-seekers and those seeking copies of records, this is largely a building that won’t get much public traffic, according to Carle. It’s going to be housing administrative support functions currently in 10 leased sites, plus some space on Carle’s main Urbana campus. Carle expects to save millions of dollars on annual leasing costs and foster more collaboration by bringing people at multiple sites together under one roof.
The patients won’t start arriving at Carle at the Fields until next year.
The administrative building will be joined in 2019 by the opening of a new Carle medical building, a Christie Clinic medical building and the jointly-owned Carle-Christie outpatient surgery center, which is also relocating.
♦ ♦ ♦
Carle employees moving into the administrative building will find their new work spaces amenity-loaded.
The building has an open concept design, lighting that maximizes natural light and wide corridors. It also features eight lactation rooms for nursing moms; computer rooms for on-site training; dozens of multipurpose rooms; a Carle Auxiliary gift shop selling corporate apparel, work accessories, office gear and gift items; and, opening in the spring, an in-house cafe called Betsy’s Bistro by Hendrick House, serving locally-sourced foods and beverages.
The human resources department, which was moving in this past week, has its own talent development area with spaces for training and career counseling, according to RaeAnn Ronk, Carle’s human resources talent management director.
Outside the doors on this campus will be still more amenities — biking and hiking trails with health and wellness stations along the way and, starting Monday, Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District bus service to this development.
♦ ♦ ♦
New traffic lights are already functioning at two main entrances — the new Fields South Drive off Curtis Road and the new Healthcare Drive off Staley Road. Those streets are open to the public, but Champaign’s public works department is advising anyone entering to be cautious with so much construction still underway.
The Carle staff relocations have been in the planning process for about two years, and the needs of each department have had to be taken into consideration, said Suzanne Sampson, system vice president for information management, analytics and project management.
For instance, three call centers — one for Health Alliance, one that does scheduling for Carle medical providers and handles prescription refills, and one that handles services for outpatients taking anticoagulation medications, have to be moved without any downtime, she said.
Not only will employees scattered around the community finally be under one roof, Sampson said, “people are really excited to move.”
♦ ♦ ♦
The scheduled move-in months for Carle employees:
FEBRUARY: Project management office, information technologies, human resources, business development, marketing and public relations.
MARCH: Patient financial services, part of health information management and revenue cycle systems.
APRIL: Part of Health Alliance Medical Plans.
MAY: The rest of Health Alliance and health information management.
➜ Note: Carle at the Fields will house employees now working at 11 locations — seven in Urbana (main campus, 502 N. Busey Ave., 221 Broadway Ave., 102 E. Main St., 1101 E. University Ave., 901 W. University, 301 S. Vine St.) and four in Champaign (206 W. Anthony Drive, 2102 N. Neil St., 2902 Farber Drive, 201 Devonshire Drive).