Sunday, August 12, 2001

Health Alliance proposes Mason outlet

By Earnest Winston
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MASON — The Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati is proposing to serve Cincinnati's growing northern suburbs by building a 350,000-square-foot regional hospital, a cancer treatment facility and an ambulatory surgery center/women's health complex.

        If the project is approved by Mason City Council, construction could begin in 2004, and would be phased-in over 20 years. The project, which also includes two four-story, 80,000-square-foot medical office buildings and a 304,000-sqare-foot parking garage, is proposed for a 35-acre site at the southwest corner of Mason-Montgomery Road and Cedar Village Drive.

        “Mason is a high-population, growth area, and part of the Health Alliance's strategic vision is to offer services in the northern portion of Cincinnati,” said Amy Bomar, spokeswoman for the Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati.

        Ms. Bomar said the project is in its infancy, and a price tag is unavailable.

        The Health Alliance would be required to help pay for traffic signals at Central Park Drive and Cedar Village Drive, and White Blossom Boulevard and Mason-Montgomery Road.

        Tim Kopp, who lives about a mile from the proposed project in the Deerfield Village subdivision in Deerfield Township, said he's concerned about the increased traffic the project would bring.

        “It just doesn't feel like smart development to me,” he said. “To me, this type of development feels like it's better situated near a highway or industrial or commercial development.”

        Some residents, including Mr. Kopp, said they want the Health Alliance to work with residents to ensure the medical office complex fits into the neighborhood and provides a buffer for residential areas.

        Aneita Zoutendam, who lives in the White Blossom subdivision in Mason across the street from the proposed project, said she supports the medical facility.

        “I think we could have a lot worse neighbors that could give us a lot worse traffic. I do not think this is a bad thing for Mason,” Mrs. Zoutendam said.

        A public hearing of the Mason Planning Commission is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 4. The Health Alliance is seeking a zoning change to planned unit development.

        The project would be located east of the Cedar Village retirement facility; west of the Mallards of Mason and White Blossom subdivisions, and north of the Fountains of Mason Office Park.


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