By Marty Finley – Reporter, Louisville Business First

BrightSpring Health Services now has a new headquarters to accompany its recent name change.

BrightSpring moved into the top two floors of the 140,000-square-foot building at 805 N. Whittington Parkway in the ShelbyHurst Office and Research Park last month, and the company invited us in for a tour this week as employees sette into the new workspace. The new office, estimated at $34 million, is designed to create a more communal and collaborative atmosphere, said BrightSpring Chief of Staff Lisa Nalley.

BrightSpring is one of the nation’s largest providers of home- and community-based care for complex patients, such as the developmentally disabled and seniors, and is the anchor tenant for the new building, which was developed by NTS Development Co.

The company has nearly 400 employees at the new HQ but retains its data center and some information technology staff at its old offices at 9901 Linn Station Road. The company had about 100,000 square feet at its old location, but Nalley said it was a more office-heavy layout that was less conducive to the type of work environment BrightSpring wants to foster. For instance, she said the company has cut down on excess office equipment and unnecessary space that might not have been used as efficiently in its previous location. The new office has larger work stations in an open floor plan, and employees have adjustable desks for standing and sitting. There also is a series of meeting rooms, two large classroom-style training rooms and conference room space where the company promotes the collaborative atmosphere. The two-story office also has smaller meeting spaces known as “havens” that employees can use if they have a conference call and “want to escape the white noise,” said Barnard Baker, head of public relations and external communications for BrightSpring.

The complex is centered around an expansive dining hall, which connects the two floors with an elaborate staircase. In addition to a large break room with table seating, the dining hall — nicknamed both the Hub and the Cafe by some employees — has a huge kitchen area with multiple refrigerators, microwave ovens, coffee makers and plenty of cabinet storage. There also is a small market inside the space where employees can grab snacks and candy. “We really see this is as a continuation of our promise to our employees that they come first,” Baker said of the space. BrightSpring CEO Jon Rousseau previously told me that the company needed a more modern facility that could create efficiencies in space and energy and be better equipped to handle more technologically advanced initiatives and programs. He also said that the company might grow into more of the building over time.

Louisville-based Calhoun Construction Services Inc. was the contractor on the project while Tom Kargl, a vice president and principal with Louisville’s Donhoff Kargl Nall Architects, was the architect. Nalley said Mary Lee O’Bryan of Design Studio LLC and Greg Olympia handled interior design.

The new headquarters comes at a busy time for BrightSpring, which changed its name from Rescare Inc. in August. The company said the new name reflects an evolution for the company that began two years ago to meet the multifaceted and multidisciplinary needs of the populations it serves amid the changing health care landscape. And earlier this month, news broke that BrightSpring and PharMerica Corp. agreed to merge, creating a company that will serve more than 300,000 clients daily in 44 states and the District of Columbia.

Terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but the merger is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019.