WAUSAU (WAOW) — Residents of the Southeast Side Neighborhood have expressed concerns about an expansion planned at North Central Health Care.
On Monday, representatives from the expansion project presented a preliminary plan to the neighborhood meeting.
The biggest concern surrounds the plan to build two new Community-Based Residential facilities, which will be located at the intersection of Marshall Street and Ethel Street. The buildings will house patients in the alcohol and drug recovery program who are transitioning back into the community.
Residents of the neighborhood are concerned about the proximity of the building to the neighborhood. A flyer handed out to encourage neighbors to come to the Monday night meeting, expresses “concerns related to safety, increased police presence, traffic and lighting.” Many of those same concerns were brought up in the meeting.
But the CEO of North Central Health Care, Michael Loy, said safety shouldn’t be a concern.
“In terms of the patient population, that’s really not changing from today to tomorrow with this project. So, in terms of security, our campus is only going to get safer,” Loy said.
Some residents also expressed concern during the meeting that this construction would impact the value of homes in the neighborhood. The representatives from North Central Health Care said they were not able to comment on that, but two people involved in real estate at the meeting said it would be unlikely to impact the neighborhood.
Throughout the meeting, Loy emphasized that the plans presented were not finalized and they will continue to seek community impact.
The plans for expansion will also be discussed at a City Plan Commission meeting on Tuesday at 5 p.m. at City Hall. Two public input sessions at North Central Health care are also planned for April 4 and April 11.