MOUNT VERNON — People involved in the development of a new Air Evac Joint Base Jefferson being built at Mount Vernon Outland Airport gathered Monday to break ground for the new facility.

Air Evac personnel and other partners on the project, including investors and architects, were present for the celebration, along with leaders from City Hall.

The new base is being built in the airport’s Innovation Park. The new facility comes after the Mount Vernon Airport Authority Board of Commissioners approved a $1.9 million bid for Evrard Company of Marion to build the new base. The base is designed for future expansion on both the air and greenspace.

The 8,000 square feet facility is expected to be completed in 2024 and will house aircraft from both Air Evac Lifeteam 11 and Air Evac Lifeteam 172, along with two flight crews, dedicated aircraft maintenance personnel, and management staff.

The base will serve southern Illinois 24 hours per day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.