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Milford City Council approves zoning change for wellness village

With the population aging in Delaware, the Milford City Council approved a nursing and rehab center proposed by Nationwide Healthcare Services. The center would anchor a wellness village that would lease spaces to multiple tenants like a child daycare center, pharmacy, medical offices and possibly a venue for public meetings. The company needed a zoning change to build on land previously occupied by Bayhealth Medical Center. That city had originally zoned that land for only the hospital.

The new zoning applies to roughly 22 acres formerly used by the hospital that relocated. Nationwide will proceed immediately with the development of 12 acres. Representatives from the company continue to meet with a committee of residents to determine the future of the remaining 10 acres. A news release from Milford stated that the updated zoning for the wellness village project also addressed surrounding parcels. The city consolidated the zoning for the whole area and now allows flexible uses.

The CEO for Nationwide said that the city's approval meant that the company could begin signing leases with interested tenants. The completion of the zoning adjustment pleased the CEO, who added that the development would benefit the community.

Before making a substantial investment in real estate or hiring a building contractor, a person needs a clear understanding of applicable zoning laws. A consultation with an attorney may provide clarity about existing land use regulations. An attorney's familiarity with the process of rezoning a property might help a person move forward with a building project. If the developer needs to pursue special requests, like a variance or conditional use permit, an attorney may be able to manage the necessary paperwork and communications with local government.

Source: Delaware Business Now, "Milford Memorial Hospital property rezoned for wellness village", Oct. 11, 2018

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