CHICAGO (CBS)– A portion of McCormick Place is being transformed into a COVID-19 alternate care facility.
The first shipment of 500 beds have already arrived. The goal is to have another 500 beds by next week and then 3,000 beds by the end of April.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Weekend Warmup Continues
The Army Corps, and 30 soldiers and airmen with the Illinois National Guard, have already started working on the setup.
This facility is not meant to replace hospitals, instead, it will be used for patients who don’t require intensive care if hospitals need extra space.READ MORE: At Least 10 Shot, 1 Killed In Weekend Violence In Chicago
The project is thanks to $15 million in federal funding from FEMA and McCormick is just one of three sites that will supply extra beds if and when they are needed.
The other locations are Metrosouth Hospital in Blue Island and Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin.MORE NEWS: Bill For Reparations For Black Evanston Residents Soon To Go Up For Vote; Some Say It's Insufficient And Could Make Things Worse
The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is working with partners at medical centers that can spare staff members to work in the facilities. The agency is requesting volunteers with medical experience.