By Nathan Pilling
BEAVERCREEK — More than a dozen community members spoke out Monday in opposition to the possibility of a mental health and drug treatment facility opening on Grange Hall Road in Beavercreek. The opposition comes as Beavercreek City Council considers a request by TCN Behavioral Health Services to rezone the property at 1400 Grange Hall Road so the non-profit organization could conduct behavioral health and treatment services at the site.
Opposition voices at the Beavercreek City Council meeting Monday included several owners or representatives of businesses near the proposed site, as well as parents of children who attend a school across the street from the building. Those individuals offered mostly similar remarks supporting TCN and its mission, but elsewhere, citing safety concerns.
“When we moved into this (research) park, we were told what it would be zoned for,” said Travis Greenwood, president and CEO of the nearby Green Tree Group. “We moved into here to be with our professional peers and unfortunately the rezoning request and what would have to go into that building does not meet the type of peers that we want in our neighborhood.
“That does not say anything bad about people who do need treatment. I’m all for that. … I worry about clientele that may still be having troubles that are visiting that treatment center doing something that they shouldn’t be doing. That’s right next to our property there.”
Two business representatives mentioned potentially moving if TCN expanded to the site. Another business owner, representing the Goddard School – which sits across the street from the proposed TCN site – said the school’s business could be destroyed if TCN opened its facility.
“I understand what happens and what can happen in these kind of businesses,” said Lisa Durrant. “We can’t take that risk with our children there. We can’t take the risk of someone being incapacitated looking for treatment at 7 o’clock in the morning and perhaps running into one of our parents or one of our children.”
Brian Wright, an attorney representing the owner of one of buildings adjacent to the proposed site, questioned whether the proposed zoning designation would allow for the treatment activities.
“I think we really want to avoid any issues later on,” he said. “If the zoning passes and the facility goes in there, there’s some real danger that they’re walking into creating a public nuisance. … Allowing TCN Behavioral Services to move in the middle of a research park of defense contractors, who all work on security clearance-type projects, would just be problematic.”
TCN Associate CEO Tom Otto attempted to allay some of the concerns at the meeting.
“I have been in this business for over 22 years, 17 of which I have been blessed to spend with TCN,” he said. “Not one time have we had an issue with safety for our staff or to have to lock our cars or fear for anything like that.”
Otto noted that TCN’s facility in Xenia is near Cox Elementary and said the non-profit has had “no issues” there. TCN also has a facility in Fairborn near the city’s high school.
“In terms of the patients, how they interact, they’re there … to get help and they’re there to do that, and that’s their focus,” he said. “It’s not to wander off the premises for anything like that. They want to get help. … I think some of the stuff that we’re talking about is out of fear and maybe fear out of lack of understanding.”
After listening to public input, council members voted to table the second reading of a rezoning ordinance until council’s next meeting on Feb. 22.
Otto said previously that the non-profit is “still in the process of looking to purchase” the facility and would move forward with the purchase after the zoning issue is resolved. According to Greene County property records, the facility and 3.22 acres of property – currently owned by Harding Development Ltd. – have a $1.4 million appraised value.
Reach Nathan Pilling at 937-502-4498 or on Twitter @XDGNatePilling.