The former Obici Hospital property has sat vacant for a decade through several false starts on developing it. A public hearing on rezoning the property to prepare it for the market will be held April 16.
The former Obici Hospital property has sat vacant for a decade through several false starts on developing it. A public hearing on rezoning the property to prepare it for the market will be held April 16.

Archived Story

Planners to discuss Walgreens, Obici site

Published 9:09pm Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Suffolk Planning Commission will hear a proposal April 16 to rezone the former Obici Hospital site on North Main Street in preparation for development.

The city’s Economic Development Commission has owned the property for a month and a half, since it acquired the 25-acre parcel from the city. It has been vacant for about 10 years.

The old hospital was razed in 2003 after it moved its operations to the current site on Godwin Boulevard. Several attempts to sell and develop the property have fallen through, including one by Robinson Development, which bought it in 2006. After failing to get a theater operator to anchor the mixed-use site, the group sold the site back to the city in 2008.

The site currently is zoned as general commercial with a mixed-use overlay. The EDA’s request is for the mixed-use overlay to be removed, which the EDA believes will make it easier to market the site to potential developers.

Another item on the Planning Commission’s agenda for this month indicates a drugstore chain is moving ahead with plans to build near the corner of North Main Street and Constance Road, even after the city denied its hopes to have an exit on North Main Street.

Walgreens has applied for an exception request to construct its driveway that close to the water, meaning it no longer feels the lack of an exit on Main Street would be a deal-killer.

Customers would still be able to enter the lot on Main Street, near the McDonald’s, and could enter and exit on West Constance Road.

City Council approved the Walgreens request in December, but it was not clear until now whether the drugstore company would move ahead with plans.

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  • PaulaMcElroy

    Maybe we should focus on finding some use for this space that costs Suffolk residents another 6 cents since the first six cent increase is to pay a premium for a woman who thinks educators are out of touch with reality. Come on Suffolk city council. Surely you can come up with a more moronic use for that space that will cost stupid money and add ZERO quality of life. Surely you can come up with a concept that will kill the very thing that makes Suffolk attractive. You doing a pretty great job of that. We know YOU only see “compete with Va Beach” so come on . . . be visionary. Forget that if we wanted “Va Beach” we would be there. Find that poison pill. Figure out how to really destroy it. There are blue prints out there. Find more failures and follow in that path. Yea!

    Suggest Removal

  • John Doe

    This whole Walgreens thing is ridiculous!! How much added traffic do you think it will bring? I’m guessing not a lot…The traffic already exist. If people are going to the drug store, chances are they were headed to Rite Aide, which is already there. Now, they’ll have a choice.

    Suggest Removal

  • dollyb12

    If Walgreen’s insists on building on top of this Main St/Constance Rd intersection, I will just spend my money in the opposite direction in Chesapeake. I have no doubt that the traffic congestion caused by yet another entrance/exit will create a driving hazard.

    Suggest Removal

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