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City Council approves permits for new mental health hospital in northeast Lacey

Olympian - 6/18/2021

Jun. 18—Lacey will now be home to not one, but two mental health hospitals after the City Council approved permits for a site in the northeast area of the city.

The city's hearings examiner and staff had recommended approval of the conditional use and wetland development permits.

Providence St. Peter Hospital and Fairfax Behavioral Health — jointly known as Olympia Behavioral Health LLC — have proposed an 85-bed mental health hospital at 3000 Marvin Road NE. Fairfax operates similar locations in Everett, Kirkland and Monroe.

Fairfax Chief Executive Ron Escarda told the hearings examiner in May the hospital will serve voluntary and involuntary patients, including children, adolescents and adults, offering treatment for chemical dependency and addiction, bipolar disorders, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health diagnoses.

The hospital is expected to employ more than 200 people and operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, he said. Fifty to 75 jobs are expected to be created during construction.

The council on Thursday asked questions about wetlands, trees and traffic.

The wetland development permit will be used to fill one wetland for development, but three other wetlands on the site will be left intact, senior planner Sarah Schelling told the council.

As for the trees, about six acres of the 22-acre site will be used for development, leaving 16 acres of forest, she said.

Marvin Road Northeast at 31st Avenue Northeast will remain unchanged; however, a roundabout will eventually be built at that intersection and sidewalks will be extended south along Marvin Road, Public Works Director Scott Egger said.

Where's the other mental health hospital in Lacey? It's called South Sound Behavioral Hospital and can be found in the city's Midtown.


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