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“Murder reflects plight of ex-Mayview patients”

1106 Mayview Hospital_128

1106 Mayview Hospital_128 (Photo credit: nooccar)

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This November 23, 2013 article on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette website sheds some light on what has happened to some of the former patients from Mayview State Hospital since it closed in 2008

“State to be paid $505,505 for Mayview”

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10154/1062611-57.stm

In the June 3, 2010 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is an article indicating that the property and building formerly the location of Mayview State Hospital is being purchased for $505,505.

While the amount is disappointing, there has been legislation signed that will indicates that the amount left after the State recovers it’s costs for maintaining the property since the closure, that the remaining amount will be split 50/50 betwenn the Mental Health and Mental Retardation budgets for the ares that were serviced by Mayview. 

The article describes things in more detail, but that should give you an idea of what is happening.

I’m pleased about where the proceeds will be going, but feel like the devaluing due to asbestos in the buildings, in many ways short changed the programs that would be benefiting from the money.  Still though I don’t feel it is a complete loss, things could have gone much differently then they did and something is generally better then nothing when it comes to money in my mind.

“Mayview Patients One Year Later”

  I found the following article that includes a link to an audio broadcast offering an update on the status of those still at Mayview and also gives a sort of window into what is happening with those who are living in the community.  It was originally posted on WDUQ’s blog on April 17, 2009, but it answered a few questions I had regarding wondering how folks that were discharged from Mayview were doing and if the community had the supports in place these folks needed before they were discharged.  You can read the writeup below or follow this link to check it out for yourself and listen to the audio broadcast fo the segment. http://wduqnews.blogspot.com/2009/04/mayview-patients-one-year-later.html 

Mayview Patients One Year Later

Mayview State Hospital closed nearly a year ago, and former residents are living in the community. At one time the facility housed more than one thousand patients, but by the time it closed, there were just 250. In 2007 two of those patients died of unnatural causes, but the general consensus is that the vast majority are doing well and getting the services they need. Most of those services are being provided by small nonprofit organizations. Patients, service providers and doctors all seem to have their own take on the way the new system is working. You can hear some of those thoughts by listening to a longer version of the story.

“South Fayette plans public hearing for Mayview property”

This article found in the March 17, 2009 issue of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette further discusses  the possible uses for the former Mayview State Hospital Grounds.  The article can be found in its original format at … http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09076/956220-100.stm

South Fayette plans public hearing for Mayview property
Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The South Fayette commissioners last night set an April 13 public hearing date for a proposed new recreational-use zoning district that was designed with the Mayview State Hospital property in mind.

Mayview closed at the end of 2008 and the state has launched a task force to determine the best use for the 330-acre property. An appraisal has been ordered to determine the value of the property and its most profitable potential use.

South Fayette officials have said that only about 90 of the property’s acres are useable because of wetlands, slopes and railroad tracks. It is also in a relatively remote location along Mayview Road fronting Chartiers Creek.

The property originally was zoned for residential use, but the commissioners in October rezoned it for use as a business park. They said at the time that they were designing a new zoning designation for it.

South Fayette manager Mike Hoy said the proposed district is modeled on recreational zones in other municipalities, allowing private, public or non-profit recreational uses, agriculture or extremely low-density housing.

He said officials had consulted with their counterparts in neighboring municipalities — especially Upper St. Clair, which lies on the other side of the creek — in drawing the district.

“We want to provide the best possibility for redevelopment in a manner that is in the best interests of not only South Fayette but others, too,” Mr. Hoy said. “What can we do here that can benefit everyone?”

Advocates for former Mayview patients have been lobbying to have the land sold for the highest amount possible with the money going to help care for the mentally ill.

Mr. Hoy said the zoning should add value, because the slopes and wetlands can be used for recreation.

“It really lends value to areas that are pretty much undevelopable in the first place,” he said.

Brian David can be reached at bdavid@post-gazette.com or at 412-722-0086.
First published on March 17, 2009 at 5:36 am

“Mayview property likely will be split”

This article was found in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review on Saturday, February 21, 2009 at the following location …. http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/s_612789.html

Mayview property likely will be split

By Bonnie Pfister
TRIBUNE-REVIEW

Saturday, February 21, 2009

 

The 300-acre campus of the former Mayview State Hospital likely will be split in two, with its tree-covered slopes preserved as green space, while the flatter area could be redeveloped into a residential “village” or business park.

South Fayette Township Manager Michael Hoy said Friday that removing 40 steeply sloped acres would likely make the grounds more attractive to developers. Proposals for the land that housed the psychiatric hospital are still in their infancy.

The property is zoned for either business or residential development.

Building a housing and treatment facility for people with mental-health issues also is a possibility, Hoy said.

Chris Goswick of the Allegheny County Department of Economic Development, and a member of the Mayview Land Reuse Task Force that met Thursday to discuss the future of the property, said the county can’t afford large-scale infrastructure work there. The land is accessible by a simple two-lane road only, and county resources already are tapped to cover upgrades to existing bridges and roads.

Mayview ceased to operate as a hospital in late December, although 11 patients are housed in what is now a long-term structured residence — the most secure type of housing-and-treatment facility available for people with mental illnesses. Those patients are expected to be moved to other accommodations by the end of June, said Rich Kuppelweiser, the facility’s chief operating officer.

On Thursday, about 60 activists with the Consumer Health Coalition urged task force co-Chairs Sen. John Pippy, R-Moon, and Nick Kotik, D-McKees Rocks, to find a way to bring proceeds of the land sale to the region for mental-health services. Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Highland Park, introduced such a resolution Wednesday to the Legislature. Existing law requires proceeds of state land to go to a general fund.

Kotik offered his support, but made no promises.

“John and I will do all we can,” Kotik said. “But unless we can convince at least 26 senators and 102 legislators that this has merit, it’s not going to pass.”

Members of the task force will meet at least twice more before making final recommendations to the state, perhaps in May. The land sale is not expected for at least another year.

“Money for Mayview patients?”

This article found in the Pitsburgh Post-Gazette on Thursday, February 26, 2009 and can be found at … http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09057/951665-57.stm

The article discusses the ongoing debate over where the proceeds from the sale or lease of the land occupied by the now closed Mayview State Hospital.

Money for Mayview patients?
Coalition wants proceeds from sale of hospital to be used for mentally ill
Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sally Jo Snyder is about to reach the first of her three major goals regarding the closed Mayview State Hospital.

Next month, an appraiser will be chosen to analyze the value of the hospital’s 300-acre site on the South Fayette-Upper St. Clair border, both in light of the current zoning and the best use of the property.

The highest and best language means the appraiser will look at the type of development that would make the property the most valuable, and will include that in the analysis.

“Historically, properties like this have been sold for a song, then developed, and the community makes a killing,” Ms. Snyder said Tuesday.

This time around, she instead wants the appraisal to be followed by a sale at fair market value with proceeds going to a fund that will fill the void of Mayview by caring for the mentally ill.

“Let’s honor what the true intent of that land is,” she said.

Ms. Snyder, a United Methodist minister who heads the Consumer Health Coalition and has taken up the cause of former Mayview patients, has been pushing her agenda at meetings of a task force set up by the state to determine the eventual use of the Mayview property.

About 100 coalition members showed up at last Thursday’s task force meeting wearing black and gold T-shirts bearing a quote from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: “The time is always right, to do the right thing.”

One problem for the coalition, though, is that the enemy is nebulous. The politicians involved — task force co-chairs state Sen. John Pippy, R-Moon, and State Rep. Nick Kotik, D-Robinson, as well as state Rep. Dan Frankel, D-Squirrel Hill, and state Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Highland Park — have been supportive of the coalition’s goals, and legislation on the use of sale proceeds is in the works.

But precedent, bureaucracy and the state’s financial straits all pose challenges.

Ms. Snyder noted that an authority created by Haverford Township in suburban Philadelphia bought the 250-acre Haverford State Hospital site for $3.5 million in 2002, and in 2006 sold 39 acres to a housing developer for $17 million. None of the money went to benefit the mentally ill.

Officials in South Fayette have said that only about 90 acres of the Mayview property are usable; the rest are wetlands, steeply sloped or railroad right-of-way. The property also is fairly isolated, without access to major roads; and the officials are of the opinion that the buildings will have to be razed due to asbestos concerns.

South Fayette Commissioners also took action in October to protect their own rights in the debate by rezoning the Mayview property. Previously zoned for rural residential use, it is now zoned for development as a business park, with offices and service-oriented shops. The township also is looking into creating a new zoning district for the property, possibly aimed at recreational use.

Ms. Snyder noted that she was not a real estate expert, but in her view “that’s a sweet piece of land that people will want to get their hands on.”

She envisions a commercial/retail mix, “kind of like a SouthSide Works thing” on the property, which fronts Chartiers Creek across from Upper St. Clair.

She said a $2 million ballpark figure mentioned by the state Department of General Services, which administers the site, was ridiculously low.

“That’s not in the ballpark,” she said. “That’s not even on Route 28 on the way to the ballpark.”

“Mayview property likely will be split”

This article found on PittsburghLive.com at the following address … http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/s_612789.html Further discusses the potential use of the former Mayview State Hospital property

Mayview property likely will be split

By Bonnie Pfister
TRIBUNE-REVIEW

Saturday, February 21, 2009

 

The 300-acre campus of the former Mayview State Hospital likely will be split in two, with its tree-covered slopes preserved as green space, while the flatter area could be redeveloped into a residential “village” or business park.

South Fayette Township Manager Michael Hoy said Friday that removing 40 steeply sloped acres would likely make the grounds more attractive to developers. Proposals for the land that housed the psychiatric hospital are still in their infancy.

The property is zoned for either business or residential development.

Building a housing and treatment facility for people with mental-health issues also is a possibility, Hoy said.

Chris Goswick of the Allegheny County Department of Economic Development, and a member of the Mayview Land Reuse Task Force that met Thursday to discuss the future of the property, said the county can’t afford large-scale infrastructure work there. The land is accessible by a simple two-lane road only, and county resources already are tapped to cover upgrades to existing bridges and roads.

Mayview ceased to operate as a hospital in late December, although 11 patients are housed in what is now a long-term structured residence — the most secure type of housing-and-treatment facility available for people with mental illnesses. Those patients are expected to be moved to other accommodations by the end of June, said Rich Kuppelweiser, the facility’s chief operating officer.

On Thursday, about 60 activists with the Consumer Health Coalition urged task force co-Chairs Sen. John Pippy, R-Moon, and Nick Kotik, D-McKees Rocks, to find a way to bring proceeds of the land sale to the region for mental-health services. Sen. Jim Ferlo, D-Highland Park, introduced such a resolution Wednesday to the Legislature. Existing law requires proceeds of state land to go to a general fund.

Kotik offered his support, but made no promises.

“John and I will do all we can,” Kotik said. “But unless we can convince at least 26 senators and 102 legislators that this has merit, it’s not going to pass.”

Members of the task force will meet at least twice more before making final recommendations to the state, perhaps in May. The land sale is not expected for at least another year.

“Task force nears end of Mayview study”

The following article was found in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review on Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2009 at the following address … http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/s_612203.html

 

Task force nears end of Mayview study

By The Tribune-Review

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

 

A task force studying how to re-use Mayview State Hospital property is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Thursday in the dietary building of the Mayview campus in South Fayette.

The task force, chaired by state Sen. John Pippy, R-Moon, and state Rep. Nick Kotik, D-Coraopolis, is wrapping up a year of study on possible uses of 30 buildings on the 335-acre campus near Boyce Road.

The mental health facility was officially closed in late December as part of a statewide move to treat patients in community-based settings. About a dozen patients are awaiting placement to other long-term facilities.

“Mayview State Hospital Closes”

This article dated December 30, 2008 was found on MSNBC.com at the following address … http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28426244/  it describes what the the final days of Mayview State Hospital have been like.

Mayview State Hospital Closes

Facility In Operation Since 1893
ThePittsburghChannel.Com
updated 12:47 a.m. ET, Tues., Dec. 30, 2008

BRIDGEVILLE, Pa. – It was a quiet day at Mayview State Hospital on Monday as the campus that once consisted of 80 buildings and consumed more than 1,000 acres closed its doors.

Only a few hundred people lived at the hospital in recent years and those remaining prepared to move into local communities.

Mary Jeanne Serafin, CEO of Mayview State Hospital, said closing the facility and allowing the mentally ill to live on their own will help them thrive.

“It’s exactly the right thing to do. What we know today is that people actually recover in community settings,” said Serafin.

But residents in Baldwin Township remain vocal and tend to disagree with Serafin.

“This won’t be a safe neighborhood anymore,” said Shirley Keller of Baldwin Township.

Keller’s back yard sits next to the former Rolling Hills Manor Assisted Living Center, where former Mayview patients are scheduled to live.

Mercy Behavioral Health wants to use the facility, but has been battling zoning issues and the community.

Signs opposing the move line front yards and homes are going up for sale.

The staff at Mayview said using Rolling Hills Manor is the safe thing to do and residents need to show compassion instead of outrage.

“Everyone deserves to live in an inclusive environment in a community,” said Serafin.

The remaining dozen patients who still require long-term institutional care and were supposed to go to the Rolling Hills Manor location will remain a facility at Mayview until an agreement can be reached or another site is chosen.

URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28426244/

“Mayview Has Deep Roots In Pittsburgh Area”

 This article found on KDKA’s website dated December 29, 2008 can be viewed in it’s original format at …. http://kdka.com/local/Mayview.state.hospital.2.896738.html  It offers a little more information about the history of Mayview State Hospital.  It has some info that is similar to other articles I’ve posted about Mayview’s history, but there were also some items that weren’t in other articles, so it’s worth reading if you have an interest in the history of Mayview State Hospital.  KDKA also has a video that goes along with this article it can be seen by clicking the following link …. http://video.aol.com/video-detail/mayview-state-hospital-closes-for-good/1149901200 

Mayview Has Deep Roots In Pittsburgh Area

SOUTH FAYETTE TWP. (KDKA) ―

The roots of Mayview State Hospital run deep. It began as a “poor house,” located on Virgin Alley, now Oliver Avenue, near Wood Street in the early 1800’s.

This news item from the “Pittsburgh Dispatch” of 1893: “The removal of inmates of the City Poor Farm occurred yesterday. In less than 8 hours after the work commenced, the city’s poor were in their new quarters.”

With mental illness still very much a mystery, they did the best they could in those new quarters known as Marshalsea back then.  More than 300 acres of farmland in South Fayette Township eventually became Mayview State Hospital. But the mentally ill were only part of the patient population.

“It was sort of the misfits of society would be sent to these places,” says Father George DeVille, now pastor of Holy Rosary Parish in Washington County. Father DeVille was chaplain at Mayview and has written a history of the place.

In the 1930’s there were 4,000 patients and a train ran from Mayview to downtown Pittsburgh. Aside from sheltering the mentally ill, Mayview housed a nursery for illegitimate children, provided medical and surgical treatments for the poor and elderly, as well as tuberculosis and syphilis patients.

Those with mental illness received hydro and steam box therapies, insulin and electro shock therapies. The pharmacy had a liquor license.

Even in later years, the average stay for patients with mental issues was 10 to 12 years. For some it was the only home they knew. “We would have patients 40 to 60 years,” DeVille said.

The real change in therapy came in the 1950’s with the development of specialized medications and it is those drugs that have allowed those with mental illness to move back to the community in the least restrictive settings – no longer isolated or behind bars.

“We did what we did with what we had at the time – and now things are improving – I really do think it’s better for the patient,” DeVille said.

Twelve patients still remain at Mayview. They will be cared for at the old facility by UPMC Mercy’s Behavioral Care Unit until an appropriate place can be found for them. The property is being appraised by the state and a task force will ultimately determine what will be done with it.

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