Updated: December 04, 2019 09:04 AM
Created: December 03, 2019 11:42 PM
SARATOGA SPRINGS - One by one for nearly an hour and a half the Saratoga City Council listened to residents who are for and against taking the green space on Morgan Street and re-zoning it from residential to commercial.
"I support it because the medical community and the people who know best how to run a hospital and how to deliver healthcare in this community support it," said one hospital board member.
"No one said the hospital shouldn't stay there, no one said it shouldn't expand, we're just saying it should expand elsewhere and leave our neighborhood alone," a resident said.
For some residents who live on Morgan Street, Myrtle Street and the Birch Run neighborhood, they are concerned with the traffic, noise and lower property values that a new facility might bring.
Claudia Braymer, who represents Saratoga Concerned Neighbors, said changing the zoning would irreversibly and negatively impact the character of the neighborhood.
"They're not making a very good argument for why they need to expand in that direction when they have other properties available and they're expanding all over region like I mentioned, Malta, Wilton, Exit 18 in Queensbury," Braymer said.
Michael Ortiz, a doctor, practicing for 35 years will tell you there is great difficulty and challenges presented to not having a facility closer to the hospital.
"I have three partners, one of whom has an office in Malta, one is in the operating room every day, and I'm in the Saratoga office. If the guy in the operating room needs help, we're tied up," Ortiz said.
Saratoga Hospital is proposing building a 75,000 square foot, three story facility with a parking space to accommodate 300 cars.
"I think you've heard it, loud and clear, I can't say it any better than many of the people here, this is important," Saratoga Hospital CEO said.
Residents and hospital staff and officials will be able to continue voicing their positions in two weeks at the next public hearing, December 17th at the recreation center.
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