Allegis gains time to build care center Residents oppose size of planned nursing home

July 10, 1996|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

A state health agency has granted a Prince George's County company's request for more time to build a $15 million nursing home and assisted-living facility on the South Haven peninsula.

The Maryland Health Resources Planning Commission (MHRPC) voted 6-2 yesterday to extend Allegis Health Services Inc.'s certificate of need, which was to expire this December, to February 1998 so it can build the facility on 11.37 acres off South Haven Road.

"We are pleased with the results," said Paul J. Diaz, the chief executive officer with the Calverton-based firm. "We are going to move forward on the project."

But for the more than 50 South Haven residents who traveled from Annapolis to Baltimore to demonstrate their opposition to the proposal, the MHRPC's decision was anything but pleasing.

"I'm very disappointed in their decision," said Joanne Johnson, president of the Southaven Community Association and a member of the South Haven Peninsula Coalition.

She added, "I think we presented a good case."

The coalition, made up of the Southaven group and civic groups in Bon Haven, South River Manor and Windfern Forest, asked members of the commission to reject Allegis' request because of the size of the 115,000-square-foot, two-story center and a lack of roads to handle future traffic.

"We continue to be opposed to the size of the project," said Joan Bell, a member of the Bon Haven Community Association. "There was a rumor that it was going to be a 50-bed facility. No one had a problem with that."

But Diaz and other Allegis officials said it was unlikely they would scale it back from the 232-bed facility they planned.

Although the decision gives Allegis the green light to solidify the financial commitment from Health Properties Inc. in Newport Beach, Calif., and get the necessary building and grading permits from the county, Diaz said Allegis would try to improve relations with the coalition.

"Our work has just begun," he said. "We need to go back and talk to those folks because we can't be successful unless the project is embraced by the community."

Pub Date: 7/10/96

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