Psychiatric hospital comes to north Sacramento

Mental-health services get an upgrade

A north Sacramento neighborhood that raised all kinds of fuss when a card room moved to town in November 2012 is keeping mum about a 120-bed psychiatric hospital racing through the city’s approval process.

During a brief hearing on June 27, the Sacramento Planning and Design Commission unanimously recommended approval of the 70,860 square-foot inpatient facility to the city council. The roughly 7-acre project site sits in a vacant suburban center at 1400 Expo Parkway, just south of the Red Lion Woodlake Hotel, where a contentious card room took root late last year.

Unlike that effort, which drew community outcry and claims of political favoritism, no one from the nearby Woodlake neighborhood registered opposition to this project, a fenced-in transitional-care hospital that will run 24 hours a day and treat alcohol and substance abuse, as well as mental and behavioral illnesses.

A typical patient's stay would last from three days to two weeks, a city staff report states. An outpatient therapy component would serve an additional 20 to 30 clients a day during normal business hours. The hospital would beef up mental-health services in a county with a marked need.

Woodlake resident and noted businessman Bob Slobe said the project applicant, Signature Healthcare Services LLC, “did a good job” reaching out to people in his neighborhood.

The eight commission members in attendance last Thursday noted they had also met with the applicant, with Commissioner Edmonds Chandler crediting Signature Healthcare with taking “positive” city input on the proposal.

Project planner Antonio Ablog explained that since the proposal involves a zoning amendment to allow hospital development, final approval of the one-story facility rests with the city council.