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October 24, 2013
CITY OF GROSSE POINTE — Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe will expand up, down and around if a growth spurt goes as planned.

A roughly half-block long, two-level, semi-undergound parking deck could be built next spring along the hospital's eastern boundary along Notre Dame.

A two-story outpatient services building could follow in 2015 on the opposite side of campus bordering Cadieux.

The proposed parking deck's 420-car capacity reveals the degree of additional infrastructure Beaumont's development team calculates is needed to accommodate current increased demands for services at the square-block complex in the City of Grosse Pointe.

Meeting long-term needs consists of erecting a four-story inpatient building — the same height as the hospital today — in the center of campus.

Future prospects also include a 200-space, semi-undergound parking deck on lower Cadieux.

Although the 420-space deck near Notre Dame and outpatient building are intended to meet current demand, the four-story addition and replacing a surface parking lot along lower Cadieux with a 200-space deck, according to Michael Hoeflein, of the hospital's real estate development planning group.

The Cadieux deck and central building were devised at the request of city officials to reveal what the campus would look like if "developed to its maximum potential," Hoeflein said.

"It's hard to put a time frame on those long-term items because they're driven by market conditions," he told the city council on Monday, Oct. 21.

Hospital officials tailored expansion to a proposed hospital district envisioned in the city's master plan, updated last November.

Councilmembers liked the hospital's proposal so much, they directed City Manager Peter Dame to begin drafting an ordinance transforming the site into a hospital district.

"Right now, it's zoned residential," Dame said. "We need a zoning district for the entire block."

"I'm getting positive comments and nods," Mayor Dale Scrace told Dame. "That's your signal to proceed."

Beaumont officials cleared the way for expansion by buying houses on its side of Notre Dame.

Judith LeBeau, a 13-year resident on the other side of Notre Dame across from the hospital, doesn't want to live face-to-face with a new parking deck, even if only one level is above grade.

"The idea of a four-story building later on — I don't know if I can take it," LeBeau said.

Hospital officials said they met with neighboring residents at least four times since last December to discuss expansion plans.

"The only concern that was really raised was about additional traffic down various streets," said Rick Swaine, Beaumont Grosse Pointe president.

In response, the hospital intends to close a driveway off Notre Dame.

Preliminary site plans include promoting a new entrance and exit off Jefferson.

"For (Beaumont) to get approval to build anything, they'll have to provide a traffic study so we can make sure that anything necessary to deal with increased traffic is done," said John Jackson, executive vice president of McKenna Associates, the city's planning consultant.

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