Work has begun on the property located at 1000 North Main Street in Harrison which will become home to NARMC’s Emergency Medical Services Logistics Facility. The new 14,100 square foot Logistics Facility will include a dispatch center, offices, staff training facilities, ambulance bays, maintenance bays, quarters for staff, and emergency backup generators.
The property was originally the site of the Rio Hotel owned by E.C. and Merle Jackson. Many long-time residents will remember the beautiful swimming pool which was used by the community as well as by travelers. Over time, the property was repurposed and was eventually converted into apartments intended to attract students at North Arkansas College. It was appropriately named Hoops and Homeruns to reflect the college’s sports program.
In 2008, the building suffered severe storm damage and was boarded up and abandoned. Then, in late 2014, NARMC Foundation Director Kim Rosson approached property owner Phil Wilson about the possibility of donating the property to the hospital. Rosson thought that proximity to the hospital made the property an ideal place to build a new ambulance barn. However, before the donation was finalized, a fire consumed the old building during the early morning hours of October 29, 2014.
The process of removing the rubble and preparing the land for construction of the ambulance barn did not go smoothly. There were legal issues, surveys, inspections, and numerous approvals before the property could be successfully transferred to the Foundation. The donation of the Hoops and Homeruns property to North Arkansas Medical Foundation was finalized on Tuesday, April 14, 2015.
The new Logistics Facility was designed for this location and to meet the specific needs of the EMS system. It is 300 feet long and will encompass 14,100 square feet of total operational space. The facility can be subdivided into three primary sections: Logistic, Operation, and Maintenance.
The Logistics office space will measure 4,900 square feet. It will include a newly-designed and equipped NARMC Emergency Dispatch Center, EMS administrative offices, and educational facilities which include a Department of Health Licensed Training Site and the offices of the newly-formed Mobil Integrated Healthcare/Community Paramedic program. Because EMS is a 24 hours a day / 7 days a week operation, the Logistics section will include living space with all standard amenities for the crews while on duty.
The Operations section is 6,800 square feet of fleet operation space. This includes 10 individual bays for the ambulance fleet and support vehicles, and storage areas for supplies and equipment. This area will be heated and cooled to insure that equipment and medical supplies are kept within required temperature ranges.
The Maintenance section is a 2,400 square foot, 3 bay maintenance facility. The facility was designed to handle ambulance and emergency vehicles used by EMS and includes vehicle lifts, equipment and tools, and storage areas.