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Beline Obeid

Hospital district created


March 06, 2014
CITY OF GROSSE POINTE — The expansion of Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe within its square-block campus can occur under a uniform zoning regulation now that the property has been transformed into a hospital facilities district.

"This rezoning is critical to the hospital," said Rick Swaine, hospital director.

The new district, established this week by a unanimous City of Grosse Pointe council, replaces a quilt of separate zoning districts on the block, many reflecting previous usage for single and multi-family housing.

A single code is intended to give municipal officials more cohesive oversight of hospital development.

"It allows the hospital to continue to evolve and have state-of-the-art facilities while protecting the surrounding neighborhood residents," said John Jackson, the city's planning consultant.

Beaumont occupies a block bordered on three sides by residential roads Cadieux, Maumee and Notre Dame and, to the south, Jefferson, a major artery.

The hospital formerly shared the block with single and multiple-family housing, which the hospital acquired and either razed or will tear down, to the alarm of some nearby homeowners.

"We're trying to deal with the reality that we have a hospital on this space, and to change the zoning to allow the hospital use currently there and take away this hodgepodge of other uses that aren't consistent with what is going on there," said Councilwoman Jean Weipert.

Beaumont representatives revealed plans last October to expand facilities at the Grosse Pointe campus.

Plans consist of a:

roughly half-block long, two-level, semi-undergound, 420-space parking deck along part the hospital's eastern boundary on Notre Dame.

two-story outpatient services building bordering Cadieux.

four-story inpatient building — the same height as the hospital today — in the center of campus.

200-space, semi-undergound parking deck on lower Cadieux.

"We have major parking issues," Swaine said. "Now, we park about 25 percent of our employees off-site. We have patients and visitors circling on a daily basis looking for parking. It's absolutely critical we have some relief from that standpoint."

Construction of the outpatient building frees space in the main hospital structure for in-patients rooms.

"The goal is to open more private rooms because that's what people want," said Dr. Donna Hoban, chief medical officer. "They don't want to be in semi-private rooms and share a bathroom."

"The hospital facilities district has development standards — setbacks, building heights, landscape requirements, permitted uses and parking requirements," Jackson said. "Those standards will apply to any future development on this property."

Future construction involves an application process requiring the hospital to submit to the city a community impact statement.

The study addresses traffic and delivery patterns, noise and more.

"We're putting the rules in place," Jackson said. "Right now, we're operating under no set of rules, really. So, we're trying to get a set of rules in place that we can all understand."

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