Ascension St. Mary’s Hospital in Saginaw will break ground this afternoon on a $17.6 million expansion of its emergency care center. The project will add 12.600 square feet to the existing emergency department.

Plans include improving access for ambulances and the public. Ascension St. Mary’s officials said the improvements will transform the facility into a modern-day emergency and level II trauma center with 24 exam and treatment rooms and two state-of-the-art trauma rooms. St. Mary’s has been a designated level II trauma center since 2008.

The new emergency care center is projected to open in spring, 2021.