A wall raising ceremony was held Tuesday, April 19 at the future site of Village Veterinary Hospital at Echo Plaza, 2533 A Vandalia Street, Collinsville. Although some preliminary work has already begun, the ceremony served as the official kick-off of the extensive remodeling project being led by Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc. Braddock Architectural Services, LLC did the design for the facility.
Dr. Kelly Jones, owner of Village Veterinary Hospital, was surrounded by family and friends as the first new wall was lifted into place. The group, with ceremonial gold hammers in hand, then posed for photos.
When completed, the 3,000-square-foot hospital will have four exam rooms, surgery room, lab, X-ray room, treatment room, grieving room, reception area, office and breakroom. Berard Gallant, Korte & Luitjohan project manager, is “looking forward to transforming a former title company office to an animal hospital.” Work completion is slated for late June.
Dr. Jones is a 1999 graduate of Triad High School. She later earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Illinois University and taught high school science for seven years at Mt. Olive. While teaching, she also earned a Master of Science degree from SIUE. While she loved teaching, Dr. Jones said, “I longed to be a veterinarian after helping my childhood cat get treatments after a cancer diagnosis.” This led to her pursuing a degree from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, which she achieved in May 2014. Since then, she has been a veterinarian at Pope Animal Hospital in Alton.
During her time in veterinary school, Dr. Jones was a member of the VBMA (Veterinary Business Management Association) and took coursework teaching students about ownership of their own businesses. This, coupled with her experience at Pope Animal Hospital, has prepared her for launching her own facility.
“I want to create a hospital that will provide a unique experience for clients and their pets,” explained Jones. She added, “Every detail of Village Veterinary Hospital has been designed for an engaging, informative, transparent, and fun experience.”
Once open, the new hospital will provide care to dogs, cats, and exotic animals including reptiles, amphibians, birds, and small mammals such as ferrets, guinea pigs, rabbits, sugar gliders, and rodents. Dr. Jones even has experience treating a tarantula, and is comfortable providing care for fish and crustaceans.
Her goals are to provide excellent care for dogs, cats, and exotic animals and to become a preferred hospital for companion animals in the Metro East. Although the Village Veterinary Hospital is a couple months from opening, the staff is in place, hand-picked for their engaging personalities and experience in the field.