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Dr. John Roberts: [2015/10/7]: Each day [UofL] sends a total of 106 residents and fellows to the Rex Robley VA Hospital. Approximately 2/3 of the residents and fellows are solely assigned to the VA but are require to return to the medical center campus for half-day continuity practice clinics each week. Many additionally have to return to the medical school campus for their required daily or weekly didactic and clinical case conferences – some of the major conferences in medicine and surgery can be teleconferenced but due to limitations of the teleconference space/availability many residents need to travel back and forth between the VA and the campus.  Approximately 1/3 of the residents and fellows, after making morning rounds at the VA, are on call for future consults and may have to return to the hospital if requested throughout the day and night.

I truly believe that the veterans would get better and more timely care at a downtown site, and the resident/fellow educational environment would be greatly enhanced with the VA on the downtown medical campus.

John L. Roberts, MD
Vice Dean for Graduate Medical Education and Continuing Medical Education

Homer H.: [2014/04/17]:Just a very quick note to raise my serious concerns over the building of a new VA hospital in the holiday manor vicinity. I am strongly opposed to this site for many reasons but my main concern would be the total cost involved in building the new VA. I would say the average American has the understanding that the governments “financial standing” is not quite the best. I think there would be much more support if we took HALF the proposed funds to build this new facility and just redid the one we already have (which is maybe 3 miles away at most). If you ask the vet’s, they like the location and just would maybe like some improved parking. I am sure 1/2 of 900,000,000 would build a pretty nice parking garage and would allow for updates necessary to make the old VA state of the art.

I also have traffic concerns (seriously, drive on Brownsboro Road around 3pm right now), noise concerns, air quality/smell, concerns, and increased criminal issues. Thanks very much for listening.

C. Franck [2013/22/09]: Thinking of patients’ visitors – the access to this location during school traffic hours and also during rush hours – it seems we owe our veterans a location where their loved ones would not have to endure bottlenecks of traffic just to visit. And a location with easy traffic flow would be easier on everyone (visitors and the ER vehicles) in a
location with better traffic flow throughout the day. Keeping in mind many drive from out of our county to get here and have already been in the car for a long time. As the conjestion in this area is already a topic of discussion, would the entire area not be better served if this former farmland were not turned into a park or other open greenspace and improve the attractiveness of the city?

E. Ramsey K.: [2013/07/27]: Over 35 years ago, I would not buy a house in the Brownsboro Rd. & 264. Way too much traffic then. And today ,it is much worst. Poor planning years ago by the 264 Expressway planners. Putting the VA Hospital on the Midland property would make the traffic much worst. There has to be a better place.

William H. [2013/03/23]: The new VA hospital should definitely be in the medical center downtown mainly because of all the amenities in close proximity that are too numerous to mention.

James K. [2013/01/21]: As a veteran who currently uses the existing facility, I think the new Hospital Should be built on current site. People in Louisville think only veterans from Louisville use the current facility. This is not the case as they come from Burkesville, Ky to cities on Indiana Illinois border. They are going to build an $18 million parking garage at the current site no matter where the new Hospital is built. Downtown parking is a nightmare around the hospital center. But if push comes to shove I would rather go downtown than Midlands site. No one in their right mind would build a hospital on that site. Can you guess what the traffic will look like in the morning when the first shift comes on and at around 3pm when they leave. It will be a nightmare.

Rob K. [2012/02/11]: Horrible place for a VA hospital. Complete waste of taxpayer dollars. Who is in charge? I doubt either a medical professional or vet.

Karen K. [2012/11/15]: Can you determine if any part of the official review process looked at the southwest hospital complex? I would consider these to be factors in its favor: access to the Watterson Expressway; economic impact which may boost, not impair, property values; employment opportunities for lower income population; health care access easier for south and west Kentucky residents and for southern Indiana; TARC service more interconnected with community; disperses healthcare providers if something drastic were to happen to downtown or St. Matthews locations, or to highways which serve those locations. I don’t know which specific Council district(s) would be involved, but it should be easy to sound out the Council member(s).

|JASON M. [2012/09/21]: As a physician in the community who did my training and residency at the University of Louisville and the VA Medical Ctr on Zorn Ave; I honestly consider the idea of locating the new hospital at Brownsboro and I-264 as not just inconvenient, but downright unsuitable for this area of town. I also find it rather absurd that the old VA hospital is only about 3 miles down I-264 from the newly proposed building site (something that doesn’t suggest anything geographically more advantageous).

|RUSS R. [2012/20/2010]: I am a veteran (Viet Nam) and I DO NOT support the Brownsboro Road location. Traffic in the area is already difficult and locating the hospital at the Midlands site will have a severe negative impact on the fire protection for the Lyndon area.

|Robert N. [2012/09/27]: I agree that the Brownsboro location for the new VA is terrible for all the stated and posted reasons. My suspicion is that the location chosen was done so to enhance the property owners financially. It happens all the time in our local, state and Federal procurment process.

I am curious if your organization has investigated the decision process by which this site was chosen.

I would like to know the following:

-When was the property sold to the VA?
-Who were the owners of the property at the time of sale?
-When did these owners acquire the property from the previous owner?
-What was the difference in acquisition price the VA paid the the price the previous owners paid?
-If the owners who sold to the VA, have had a relatively short holding period, when did the VA start their evaluation process for this location?

I know I might sound cynical, but given this development and the clear rationale for not developing the VA here, I smell a RAT, particularly when I see comments that your arguments are “falling on deaf ears of our electd official”.

I would be interested in hearing any of your continuing news and commentary on this matter.

Regards, Bob Nast

|Dave Z. [2012/09/23]: Donna Sketo covers all the pertinent points surrounding the issues of a proposed new VA Hospital located at the Midlands on Brownsboro Road. I hope the critical issues of traffic congestion and insufficient acreage are once again brought to the table and addressed rather than ignored. As is, the current plan will cost us a price that no one is prepared to pay: too much time sitting in traffic, late for work, business lost, and, yes, more accidents.
I believe I speak for MANY residents of Brownsboro Road. Please re-examine the problems and their negative impact on the Brownsboro Road/Hwy.42 & Hwy.22 and develop a NEW plan for a new VA Hospital.
Thank you, Dave & Sandi Zibart

|Gaarland T. [2012/09/23]: get v/a out of louisville there polayics can,t figure this out put in ft knox area plentty of land in the hospital at ft knox would probably like it louisville can not will not agree on anything think about it

|LB. [2012/09/04 6:15pm]: Dumbest thing Louisville has done in a long time… cramming a huge hospital in an area that is already a traffic nightmare… If they make it a golf cart community it makes more sense… money talks around Louisville and I’m tired of that alone.

|DAVID W. [2012/ 08/27 2:15pm] This is an ill-concieved plan for the vets and best use land development for this property.

|Peggy S. [2012/ 08/22] My idea is that this is a little late, the horse is out of the barn, but go for it…you need staffers from all the elective reps to help you, it would be nice that the City’s web site was current. I hope that you guys know a new turn to how politics work than what I learned from 34+ years of experience. Warrington needs a wall, drainage, blasting protection, plus I can’t research else that needs to be protected. Two years ago I tried to get support for the design of needs if this was going to happen. It became obvious that the world wanted to go against wht was casted in stone then to negotiate the best for rest.

|BRANDON S. [2012/08/21 11:02pm] Thank you for rallying the community. I just have not been able to fathom why a decision having such generational ramifications has been so ill-considered. Ease of site acquisition? For a billion dollar investment? That will exist for the next hundred (or more) years? It doesn’t take a cynic to suspect there’s something else at play here.

|ALAN R. [2012/08/21 9:11pm]: Yes, it is time to build this hospital downtown.

|VICKI G. [2012/08/19 7:32pm]: As the daughter, granddaughter, niece of Veterans of WWI WWII, Korea and Vietnam, and now the mother-in-law of active duty soldier/Iraqi veteran, our Veterans deserve the best, MOST ACCESSIBLE, well rounded care possible! Please do not ask our Veterans to settle for less!!

|Donna S. [2012/08/13]: Yes, I agree with the points Grow Smart Louisville has on the proposed VA hospital. I sent letters to all our government representatives on the issue, which seemed to fall on deaf ears as I think the positions are set in stone. I didn’t compare to already available hospitals but rather to the other feasible site option in their published study. Following is the content of my letter:

I am writing in response to the planned acquisition of land at the “Preferred Action Alternative” site located on Brownsboro Road (“Brownsboro Site”) for the construction of a new VA hospital. My family and I feel we owe a great debt and continued support to those individuals who have fought and continue to fight for our country. We care deeply about our veterans and their health care issues. That being said, if the research supports that the current facilities are inadequate for our veterans’ needs then we support a new hospital. The new hospital should provide the best care possible to our vets in the best location site possible. We do not believe the Brownsboro Site is the best location as it will significantly impact the surrounding communities and residents in a negative manner. As a result, we are strongly opposed to the acquisition of the Brownsboro Site for the new VA hospital.

• Studies conducted by outside agencies have already found that the traffic congestion is a significant problem in this area. Even with the proposed road improvement plans, we believe there will be significant additional traffic issues due to the increased volume of vehicles related to the hospital. The volume of vehicles projected by the VA does not appear to include related support service vehicles (eg delivery trucks, ambulances, garbage trucks, medical waste trucks, courier delivery, restaurant delivery, in-patient visitors, floral delivery trucks, etc.).
• The Traffic Impact Analysis Report in the VA’s presentation reflects a more negative impact on the traffic in 2018 with the hospital than without it. The VA’s own traffic study rate the traffic a “D” even with the proposed road improvements.
• The VA has stated it needs a minimum of 2,400 parking spaces which will be shared by their estimate of 3,700 cars (not including the vehicles mentioned in the above point). With these projections, it would appear that street parking may still occur in the adjacent subdivisions.
• There will be significant impact not only from an increase in vehicular traffic from the hospital but also from an increase in foot and drive-thru traffic in nearby grocery stores, gas stations, banks, restaurants, etc. By the hospital’s own estimate, there will be thousands of additional individuals in the area daily. We would suggest that this will significantly increase the # of individuals frequenting the local businesses to the degree that it will cause additional congestion and wait times in those businesses for the surrounding residents. For example, there are 2 Thornton’s gas stations that are already significantly congested, which will now become even more problematic.
• With the significant additional traffic for the hospital, air quality would be impacted as logic dictates that more vehicles cause more pollution. Additionally, there would be increased pollution/decreased air quality from the construction and on-going operation of a hospital. While this may be within acceptable levels to the VA as a government institution, should this also be considered acceptable to the people who are impacted by decreased air quality? As parents, we cannot justify this negative impact to our children, who will now be exposed to additional air pollution. The VA presentation indicates that mitigation would be needed for air quality at the Brownsboro Site. The “Alternate Action Alternative” (“St. Joseph Site”) would not need air quality mitigation.
• The Brownsboro Site has 36 acres, which is currently less than the 47 acres the VA hospital now has and significantly less than the St. Joseph Site of 99 acres. Given the projected veteran population growth over the next 10 years as well as the potential construction cost of $750 million – $1 billion, it would seem that logic would dictate purchasing a site that has additional acreage to continue to allow for expansion past the next 10 years. The Brownsboro Site is much more limited due to being more tightly constrained on all sides as well as significantly more congested with a heavier population concentration.
• The existing green space would be eliminated and surrounding views limited by the proposed hospital at the Brownsboro Site whereas the St. Joseph Site would still have green spaces due to the additional acreage.
• Associated security lighting would increase nighttime ambient light levels in the surrounding areas negatively impacting adjacent residential neighborhoods at the Brownsboro Site.
• Due to the level of traffic congestion and concentration of the population, the St. Joseph Site would appear to offer better access to a hospital than the Brownsboro site.

In conclusion, we feel that the Brownsboro site is not the best possible solution to the need for a new VA hospital. Out of the two site locations deemed viable by the VA, the St. Joseph site should be the preferred location due to the points made above. The adverse impacts as noted by the VA at the St. Joseph site would appear to be more easily mitigated without the significant detrimental impact of the various factors on the people living within the Brownsboro Site area. I would challenge the VA to think about how any perceived advantage(s) of the Brownsboro Site could possibly outweigh the significant negative impact on the people living in this area especially compared to the minimal negative impact of the St. Joseph site, which has a much smaller population in a concentrated area. To date, the debate re: the Brownsboro Site seems to be resulting in significant negative feelings towards the VA because residents do not feel that they are being heard, that their concerns are being adequately addressed, and that the best interests for everybody is being weighed equally. Given that there seems to be a viable alternative site, which appears to be a better choice once all points are considered, we strongly feel that this situation can be avoided. The issues are not just a slight increase in traffic causing a minor nuisance, the issues are significant and strongly affect the quality of life of the residents. We sincerely urge the VA to consider all the points, including human elements (eg quality of life impact) that cannot be captured by the statistical studies conducted. The veterans deserve to have a hospital that will meet their needs. We propose that the St. Joseph site is the better location because it additionally allows the opportunity for more long-term expansion and does not result in the degree of negative impact on the residents of the Brownsboro Site area.

|DONNA S. [2012/08/13 12:49 pm]: Yes, I agree with the points Grow Smart Louisville has on the proposed VA hospital…the Veterans deserve better.

|PAT R. [2012/08/12 8:22pm]: Great website! Thanks for doing this website!

|THOMAS C. [2012/08/12 1:34pm]: I’m a Vet and truly think we’re being snowed by the VA! Why would they build a SMALLER medical complex to service MORE Vets for an astronomical amount of our tax dollars! Who the hell owns THAT uber-big mistake?!!!!


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