BERLIN – With site work currently underway, construction on the second phase of the Delmarva Health Pavilion Ocean Pines is set to begin this summer.
According to developer Palmer Gillis, construction of the second building in the new medical complex should take a year. When complete, the new building will allow Peninsula Regional Medical Center (PRMC) to expand its cancer care program in Worcester County.
“We’re taking what we’ve done in Salisbury and bringing it to Worcester County,” said Thomas DeMarco, medical director for PRMC’s Richard A. Henson Cancer Institute.
Gillis received site plan approval for the 20,000-square-foot cancer center last week from the Worcester County Planning Commission. Though he was originally granted approval for the project last year, minor elevation changes required a new approval from the commission. The proposed building is the same size as the one already on the site and is expected to mirror it in appearance.
Because traffic entering and exiting the Delmarva Health Pavilion has been a concern for residents of nearby Ocean Pines, Gillis says he’s submitted plans to Maryland’s State Highway Administration for a new lane providing for a left-turn into the complex. Currently, the complex has right-in, right-out access to Route 589. Pines residents are concerned, however, because motorists leaving the complex who don’t want to go north on Route 589 are making U-turns just inside the North Gate.
Though Gillis approached the community with an offer to install an access road connecting the complex to Ocean Parkway as potential solution, residents objected. He says the access road was too controversial for the community.
“I was disappointed with their reply,” he said.
Gillis says he is working on a few potential long-term solutions to the traffic situation but in the meantime believes the addition of a lane allowing for left turns into the complex would be an improvement.
“That’ll help things initially,” he said, adding that a traffic study for the property had been scheduled for this summer. He expects construction to take 12 months.
While PRMC already offers cancer care in Worcester County, the new facility will allow the hospital to grow its services and better serve patients.
The completion of the new facility also means that local cancer patients, who are already dealing with being sick, won’t have to go far to receive the care they need.
“We have a multidisciplinary approach to taking care of cancer,” DeMarco said. “It’s a team effort. What we’re trying to do is bring that team approach there.”