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MARBLE FALLS — A new day has dawned for the Highland Lakes with the groundbreaking Wednesday of a Scott & White Healthcare clinic south of the city, the anchor for a future $183 million medical complex, officials said.

Marble Falls Mayor George Russell could hardly hide his happiness as he stood on the podium just before the ceremony, attended by a few hundred well-wishers and dignitaries.

“Isn’t this cool?” Russell asked, adding later: “It took years of time and a tremendous amount of effort by a lot of people.”

The mayor and other officials lauded the complex as beneficial for many reasons.

“It addresses a need for healthcare and will be a catalyst for future development,” Russell said.

Not long after he spoke, officials and guests grabbed gold-painted shovels to mark the ceremonial groundbreaking of the clinic, the first phase of the new Wayne & Eileen Hurd Regional Medical Center — Scott & White.

The center is at Texas 71 just west of U.S. 281.