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Cherlin expansion approved, tenants must move

July 19, 2001|By RUDY YNIGUEZ, Staff Writer

An unknown number of El Centro residents will give up their homes to make way for putting the area "on the map" of the psychiatry world.

Dr. Edward Cherlin, who owns a psychiatric practice at 230 S. 8th St., appeared before the El Centro City Council on Wednesday to seek approval for the expansion of his practice, where he said he is under contract to several large pharmaceutical companies to conduct "clinical trials."

"If' we're allowed to do this we will improve services to the community," Cherlin said. "I am giving up rental income."

Cherlin requested and was granted several building and parking variances by the council on a 4-1 vote, with Councilman Larry Grogan voting "no," saying variances should not be given.


After the council vote, Cherlin was asked by a reporter how many people live in the four apartments to be torn down behind his practice and what will happen to the residents.

He said two or three of the apartments are occupied but he did not know how many people will be affected.

"They'll have to relocate," Cherlin said.

The City Council was given an update on efforts by the Imperial Valley Emergency Communication Authority to build a new emergency communications system in the Imperial Valley. IVECA chairman and City Manager Abdel Salem said $3.5 million is needed to upgrade the Imperial Irrigation District's new system to be digital. The cost would be borne by the county and the county's cities, based on expected use, population and assessed valuation.

Brawley would pay $382,698.75; Calexico, $471,072.50; Calipatria, $71,980; El Centro, $708,400.63; Holtville, $84,561.25; Imperial, $118,111.25; Westmorland, $27,106.88 and the county $1.19 million.

Those amounts would only be for the backbone structure, Salem said. Each entity would still have to buy the needed equipment to take advantage of the system.

In other business, the council:

· gave final approval for the construction of the Desert Estates West, Wildflower El Centro and Santa Rosa housing projects on the west side of the city. The total number of homes, after modifications to Santa Rosa and Wildflower to accommodate parks and street alignments, was reduced to 314. Santa Rosa decreased from 127 homes to 122 and Wildflower from 115 to 109.

· approved a conditional use permit for the building of a Walgreens Drug Store at the northwest corner of Imperial Avenue at Main Street. The council, on a 3-2 vote, decided to eliminate a left turn lane from the drug store's northernmost driveway.

· agreed to review a proposed city budget for fiscal 2001-2002 on Aug. 1, and at that meeting to set a date for a third public workshop on the budget.

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