If the heavy machinery and earthwork weren't a good enough indicator, Essentia Health representatives officially started construction of the future Pine River Essentia Health Clinic with a ground breaking Tuesday, Oct. 29.

Speakers at the event included John Wetrosky, executive director of the Pine River Chamber of Commerce, and Lynn Hunt. Paul and Lynn Hunt sold the property that will be used for the new Essentia Health facility.

This groundbreaking is a long time coming, having been predicted literally years ago and delayed for various reasons. The clinic, being built just east of the Pine River Post Office, is anticipated to take approximately 12 months for completion.

The new clinic is slated to be approximately 17,000 square feet, or 10,000 square feet more than the current clinic. It will likely have 16 examination and procedure rooms with room to expand by as much as double if needed. Essentia Health is looking to use that space for an expanded staff and services.

The new clinic will have three doctors and a nurse practitioner in addition to either another nurse practitioner or physician's assistant. The space will also allow for limited outreach for specialties including general surgery, urology, podiatry, full OB/GYN services, cardiology and orthopedics. There will also be space for physical therapy, general X-ray and ultrasound.