Last summer, the Spring Lake Village Planning Commission approved a site plan for the new 3,500-square-foot building for Dr. Elias Achey, Dr. Jared VanIttersum and Dr. Sherrell Buyard.
Village Manager Chris Burns said she's glad the old house — which had fallen into a severe state of disrepair — is gone.
“It's needed. It's long overdue,” she said. “Hopefully, they are able to get moving on the new building soon. Hopefully, it goes faster from here on out.”
Once the new office is built, the dental practice will have its old office at 102 Buchanan St. torn down.
“It's just going to be open grassy space, an area for expansion later on,” Achey said of the Buchanan Street location.
Achey said Spring Lake Family Denistry has outgrown their current building, which is less than 1,000 square feet, and there's a long patient waiting list because of cramped quarters.
“There's a four- to five-month waiting list to have me do their dentistry,” Achey said. “We have no more room, so we have to build bigger. We're literally going to triple in size.”
The practice currently serves 2,500 patients.
“We'll be able to handle twice that,” he said. “We're still accepting new patients — it's just taking longer and longer for them to get in.”
Achey said the building was originally scheduled to be constructed last fall, but a private investor backed out.
“I've had to scramble to find new investors,” Achey said. “Jared and I own seven practices across the nation. We use our money to buy dental practices, not so much to build buildings.”
Their plans are to move into the new building this spring.
Achey said he's excited for the changes looming for the village. Kim VanKampen has purchased several downtown buildings and plans to renovate them into new restaurant, retail and residential space.
“It's going to be awesome for my patients,” Achey said. “We do same-day dentistry. While I mill a crown, they're going to be able to walk around for 20-30 minutes next door, then come back and get their crown delivered.”