Dental office rehabbing historic Urbana office space

6:00 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017 Community News
Dr. Jessica Kile and her husband are turning a historic buiding in Urbana into the home of Urbana Dental Smiles. Bill Lackey/Staff

An Urbana dental business is planning to spend thousands of dollars rehabbing a historic building in downtown Urbana for their new offices, with plans to open as early as next Spring.

Urbana Dental Smiles, whose office is now located at 314 Patrick Ave. in Urbana, purchased the site at 1052 S. Main St. just south of downtown Urbana for about $230,000 earlier this year, according to information from the Champaign County Auditor’s office. The South Main Street site briefly served as the Champaign County Courthouse in the 1950s after a fire at the old courthouse at that time, Jessica Kile, a dentist and partner in the business, said.

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The office, which specializes in cosmetic dentistry, has about nine employees and has outgrown its current location, said Kile. Marta Strembitsky is also a dentist and partner. While she initially looked at strip malls and other locations, none of the other sites were a good fit until Kile finally settled on the nearly 100-year-old building just south of downtown.

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“It had a lot of challenges with it to overcome but it mainly just felt right and we went with our gut,” Jessica Kile said. “It’s a lot more expensive to redo these buildings but for us the style of it matched the style of dentistry that we practice and the prime visible location had many advantages.”

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Kile’s husband, Jason, said the building needs extensive repairs, including new windows, improved access for handicapped patients and a completely new electrical system, among other challenges. The parking lot will also be expanded and he estimated the business’ investment could be as much as $800,000 to $900,000 overall.

Despite the cost, the project will provide a permanent home for a business that’s slowly grown over the past several years, he said. Jessica Kile said the business started in Mechanicsburg in 2013 and moved to Urbana about three years ago. The new office will provide a home for their business for the forseeable future.

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“It’s going to be fun to see it all come together,” Jason Kile said.

Along with the location, the project will preserve a building that has been standing just south of downtown Urbana for about a century. The building was briefly a county courthouse, Jessica Kile said. It has also served as a nursing home and as a meeting place for the Urbana Free Mason organization.

“It’s going to be a dental office for quite some time after this,” Jessica Kile said.