It’s been a long process, but the final step in Strategic Behavioral Health, LLC’s quest to build a psychiatric hospital in Bettendorf will be decided Tuesday.
The Bettendorf City Council will vote on approving a site development plan for the 72-bed facility at 770 Tanglefoot Lane after voting to keep the item on the consent agenda at Monday’s committee-of-the-whole meeting.
Iowa’s Health Facilities Council voted 4-1 in July to approve a certificate of need for the facility after two previous councils stalemated on the issue. Strategic Behavioral Health first submitted its application for a certificate in mid-2015 and was met with strong opposition from Genesis Health System and UnityPoint Trinity.
Genesis and UnityPoint have both added behavioral services since SBH first applied to the council, but SBH officials argued during the July meeting that there is still an unmet demand for services.
Strategic’s development director Michael Garone said there was ample room for all parties to coexist.
While the Quad-Cities’ largest hospitals opposed the addition of SBH at the facilities board meetings, the Bettendorf City Council has long held the belief that more mental health services were needed in the community, evidenced by its placement on the City Council’s goals for the previous year.
Community Development Director Bill Connors said groundbreaking at the site is expected after the first of the year.
Other buildings that house medical businesses are located in the same corridor, prompting Connors to say that it fits into the area well.
The Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval to the council by a 6-0 vote at its Nov. 15 meeting.
Based upon the city’s parking requirements, a minimum of 84 spaces was needed for the facility. SBH has put in 174 spaces.
Chris Townsend, an engineer representing SBH, said during the commission meeting that the spaces were designed to accommodate the large staff, especially at shift change.
With SBH filling out the subdivision, the city has also nixed plans to extend Golden Valley Drive.
Initially, the city had intended to extend the street from Tanglefoot Lane to 40th Avenue to accommodate high-intensity traffic, but that level of volume never came to fruition with the development the area attracted.