Health Systems

Ruling Saves Trees and Halts Methodist Dallas Wellness Center – For Now

The pecan grove on the Methodist Dallas campus has been saved for now, The Dallas Morning News reports. East Kessler resident Katherine Homan has won a court decision that invalidates the City Council’s decision earlier this year that paved the way for the hospital to build a new fitness center ad take down 11 large pecan trees.

A bitter feud erupted over the construction of a state-of-the-art fitness center that would disrupt the preservation of 11 pecan trees and the beloved green area surrounding the Methodist Dallas Medical Center.  State District Judge Bonnie Goldstein’s Monday ruling has put a halt on the 35,000-square-foot Folsom Wellness Center for now, DMN reports.

The construction was initially authorized when the council had decided to ignore city attorney advice and allow a property owner to withdraw opposition to the fitness center a day after the deadline for submission passed. Yan Hong Isenberg’s withdrawal allowed the opposition to fall to one protest short of what was needed for the three-fourths vote and enabled the council to approve the zoning proposal by a simple majority, DMN reports.

North Oak Cliff council member Chad West agreed with the judge’s ruling. Methodist told the DMN, “We are studying the judge’s rulings and have no comment at this time.”

Both sides are continuing to look for a resolution, which may mean building the wellness center somewhere else on the North Oak Cliff campus.

Read more about the back and forth between the city, North Oak Cliff residents, and Methodist Health System here.

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