A graphical rendering of the proposed design of the new Discovery Chiropractic Clinic.

Council concerned about ‘traffic bedlam’ with new clinic

City council approved construction plans for the new Discovery Chiropractic Clinic at Tuesday’s council meeting

City council approved construction plans for the new Discovery Chiropractic Clinic at Tuesday’s council meeting, but not before councillors aired some concerns.

The clinic is expected to be built at 1241 Dogwood Street – a gravel parking lot next to the downtown fire hall.

The property housed the Extreme Weather Shelter the past two winters and last August was swapped by the city with Discovery Chiropractic’s site at 1180 Fir Street.

Dr. Richard Kronk told council Tuesday that the new site will allow him and fellow owners Dr. Joshua West and Dr. Sandra Jensen to expand their business.

“Our vision for the past 15 years has been to grow our practice, not only in size but to also create a more multi-disciplinary style practice,” Kronk said.

“We’d like to incorporate massage therapy and compression therapy down the road and this gives us the opportunity to expand and be in a much better spot in the city.”

City staff approved of the design, saying it will create an attractive building with eye-catching focal points.

But Coun. Larry Samson was concerned about access to and from the building, which is proposed to be right-turn only onto and off of Dogwood Street.

“My concern is while we say right turn in, right turn out only, to not hamper the flow of traffic on Dogwood Street, there’s no island or anything to stop someone from turning left, who’s travelling south, into the facility, causing traffic bedlam or a hazard,” Samson said.

“As well, there’s nothing to stop a patient or client from turning left from the facility and up Dogwood Street, crossing two lanes of traffic and a centre lane, close to a sidewalk. How do we enforce a right in, right out to ensure people are going to abide?”

Amber Zirnhelt, the city’s manager of long range planning and sustainability, said patrons have the option of using 12th Avenue or Cypress Street to get themselves turned around, depending on which way they’re travelling.

“At this point in time, the transportation department hasn’t identified a need for a meridian, however we can certainly continue to work with the applicant to determine if additional signage is needed there,” Zirnhelt said.

But Samson and Coun. Charlie Cornfield both felt more needed to be done to ensure traffic will flow smoothly and people won’t be making illegal turns.

Samson put forward a motion, which was approved by council, to have the city’s transportation staff come back to council with a report on how it will ensure people comply with the no left turn signage.

“I do have concerns with how (the site) lines up with 12th Avenue and how there’s no island to stop people from going left when they’re not supposed to so I’d like to see more information from staff,” Samson said.

The facility is proposed to have driveways onto both Dogwood and Cypress streets and is expected to contain 26 parking stalls.

The building is proposed to follow a contemporary west coast theme design with shed roofs, large fir posts and beams, and contrasting warm colour combinations, with colour changes on the trims and details.

“In this new location we know we’ll have a great deal more exposure and we want it to be something we can be proud of, attractive to passers-by, and an enhancement to the city,” Kronk said. “We’re happy to be contributing to the growth and the beauty of Campbell River in this fashion.”

Discovery Chiropractic officially took over ownership of the property from the city on April 1 and with council approving a major development permit on Tuesday night, construction can soon get underway.

As part of the land swap deal, Discovery Chiropractic not only gave up its Fir Street property but also agreed to give the city an $86,000 cash payment.

The city intends to use the Fir Street property to house a new Sobering Assessment Centre for the city’s homeless, an initiative of Campbell River Family Services.