Delafield dispute with hospital resolved
Residential treatment center approved

By Kelly Smith - Special to The Freeman

Sept. 29, 2017

DELAFIELD — A nearly 15-months long dispute between Rogers Memorial Hospital of Summit and city officials over permits for a residential treatment facility on Oakwood Drive has been quietly resolved.

The Plan Commission on Wednesday unanimously approved a business permit for the 24-bed facility on the city’s northwest side that treats adult and adolescent eating disorders.

The Common Council approved a conditional use permit for the facility in August.

City officials believe the treatment center had operated since 2007 without required permits.

A former city administrator erroneously determined the hospital could operate the treatment center without seeking an amended conditional use permit, according to Mayor Michele DeYoe.

A conditional use permit was issued for the land in 1983 when the Cedar Ridge Foundation was operating a nursing home on the site, according to city documents.

Rogers Hospital acquired the property in 2007 and, according to hospital officials, received approval from the city to amend the permit to allow residential treatment of eating disorders.

However, city officials could not find any record of the amended permit when the hospital in June of 2016 asked permission to expand the treatment facility.

Hospital officials wanted to add a therapy building, a commercial kitchen, a greenhouse, and a gazebo.

The additions would enable the hospital to improve its treatment of 16 adults and 8 adolescents by training the residents and their families in the preparations of healthy meals, according to hospital officials.

However, homeowners in surrounding neighborhoods objected to the expansion, arguing it would result in increased traffic volume, noise and light pollution, and a possible decline in residential property values.

In addition, they argued the treatment center was a business that was illegally operating in a residential neighborhood.

The commission rejected the expansion proposal in October of 2016 and told the hospital it must seek a new conditional use permit in order to continue operations.

The hospital later agreed to withdraw the expansion proposal and seek a new permit for the treatment center.