Brazil Family Medicine, Dr. David Breitweiser's family practice, plans to construct a new medical facility.
Breitweiser has been practicing medicine in Brazil for 15 years. For the past 13 years, Brazil Family Medicine, consisting of three doctors and two nurse practitioners, has been in a rental position with St. Vincent's Clay Hospital in their current building, located at 1214 E. National Ave., Brazil.
The practice wants to expand due to a lack of space.
Breitweiser bought property on Murphy Avenue, south of United States 40, which was clear for a housing development project. He currently owns 9 acres, with 4.5 acres involving the building project.
"Right now, we're finalizing plans with our builder, doing the last stages of value engineering, cutting costs with the design and lining up the final subcontractors on the different jobs within the project," Breitweiser said. "We are planning to break ground, at the latest, in April."
He plans to have 7,500-square feet for the initial office suit, which will house his practice, with tenant spaces in wings off to the north and south of the building.
"Our personal need is extra space for our practice," Breitweiser told The Brazil Times. "But for the building as a whole, the goal is to better serve Clay County with different healthcare services, not just the family practice that we do. My goal with the tenant spaces is to bring in some other specialties so our patients have better and easier access to the components of healthcare."
No deals with tenants have been finalized yet, however, Breitweiser said he has a lot of interest.
"We don't have the final cost figures for construction yet," he said. "That is coming very soon, probably in the next week or two. Once we have that, I'll have accurate figures to talk to potential tenants."
The number of tenants that will use the facility is unknown because each tenant may need a different amount of space.
"It just depends on their needs more than anything," Breitweiser said. "I know how much space and how much capacity I have, but as an example a lab facility would just need a small suite where a multi-practitioner group would need a lot bigger suite. We have upwards of another 7,500-square feet, potentially an additional 10,000-square feet as an absolute maximum that we could add in addition to our suite."
The goal is for the building to be built all at once, however, if there are delays the building could happen in phases.
The practice currently has 12 full-time jobs. In August, the practice added Dr. Frank Zwerner as a physician.
"We're squeezed in here," Breitweiser said. "With the extra space (in the new building), we could consider another additional position down the road."
Completion of the project will maintain the existing jobs while creating approximately of five new permanent full-time jobs with an estimated total payroll of $196,000.
"From the community standpoint, this increases the tax revenue for the county," Breitweiser told The Brazil Times. "I think a lot of small towns struggle with the finances to take on new projects, and the tax base is probably the key issue that drives the funding for most small community projects."
Breitweiser wants to help the county now, even in the planning and building process, by hiring local contractors for the work.
"I think it's good for the community when there are new infrastructures going up," he said. "I have a goal to utilize as many local contractors and subcontractors for the jobs that are involved in the construction. This brings extra jobs to the community."
"My vision for the project was always that this would be a grassroots Clay County project," he continued. "For instance, we're trying very hard to keep the jobs here. The exterior of the building will be brick, and we feel very committed to using the brick that's made in the southern part of the county at the brick factory."
Breitweiser said he hopes the building project will be completed by the end of the year.