Plan Commission Passes IU Health Rezoning Proposal
Developers are one step closer to having a new IU Health campus in Fort Wayne after the city’s Plan Commission voted in favor of the project Thursday.
Seven of the eight members voted in favor of rezoning that land for retail use. Allen County Commissioner Nelson Peters abstained.
“I’ve talked to a number of the residents out there and traffic is a concern,” Peters said. “Property values are a concern and just the nature of the plan out there is a concern.”
Peters was part of a unanimous vote Thursday in favor of the primary plan. It includes height requirements for the buildings on the campus, which has been controversial because of the 150 foot hospital included in the proposal. Peters says he was on the fence about the rezoning vote and understands concerns brought up by neighbors like Andrea Mlliman.
“It is extremely quiet at night so to now be introduced to helicopters and ambulances,” Milliman said. “That’s a very big concern. This is a very quiet area.”
Milliman says she feels as if developers have at times been misleading about what eventually will stand on the land. Larry Johnson agrees.
“I think they lied to us,” Johnson said. “What they said to us other things could now happen.”
IU Health attorney Andy Boxberger says he understands the concerns over what eventually will sit on the land, but he thinks the medical campus as a whole will benefit the community long term.
“I think there’s a little bit of a misconception about the approval and that all of the development is a foregone conclusion,” Boxberger said. “This is simply the first step to allow IU Health to plan for the future.”
As this project moves one step closer to becoming reality, Milliman hopes it can be stopped.
“I ask the board of commissioners to show us that this rezoning isn’t about money, but it’s truly about serving our county,” Milliman said.
If members of the Allen County Board of Commissioners want to reject the project, they must do-so in the next 90 days. Otherwise, the project can move forward. Peters says a vote could happen as early as next Friday.