Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta is seeking to build a Ronald McDonald House — a short-term residence for patients and their families — at its new 70-acre medical campus in Brookhaven.

Plans are also being made to construct a new main entrance into the campus from North Druid Hills Road.

CHOA will hold a Jan. 3 community meeting to go over the rezoning requests it needs from the city of Brookhaven to get the go-ahead on the proposed projects. The meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. at 1680 Tullie Circle N.E.

This highlighted revised site plan for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s campus at the interchange of I-85 and North Druid Hills Road includes the addition of a Ronald McDonald House in the bottom right and a new main entrance on North Druid Hills Road to the left. (City of Brookhaven)

Zoning documents filed with the city show CHOA wants to build an up to eight-story building or hotel at the site of the nearly 4-acre site of the former Executive Park apartments at 2580 Briarcliff Road. The Ronald McDonald House facility would include up to 150 rooms. The property is currently zoned multi-family residential (RM-85) and CHOA is asking it to be rezoned to industrial (M).

“This type of housing has been an important asset for our patient families for decades, so we are reserving this area for a potential Ronald McDonald House on our campus to enable families to be close to their children during treatment,” CHOA spokesperson Brian Brodrick said in a written statement. Planning for the new Ronald McDonald House is still in the early phases, he added.

The houses are run by chapters of an Illinois-based nonprofit that is separate from, but heavily supported by, the McDonald’s fast-food company.

CHOA purchased the Executive Park apartments last year and included the property in the medical campus’ master plan approved last year by the Brookhaven City Council. Tenants were able to move out after their leases expired and once everyone moved out the buildings were demolished, according to Brodrick.

In 2015, a Ronald McDonald House was opened at 5420 Peachtree-Dunwoody Road in Sandy Springs to serve families with children being treated at local hospitals, especially CHOA’s Scottish Rite. This 31-bedroom facility includes a three-story “treehouse” play area for children.

Efforts to expand the Pill Hill house began more than a decade ago. Fulton County approved the project in 2005, prior to the existence of the city of Sandy Springs. But a lawsuit from neighbors delayed it.

Another 50-bedroom Ronald McDonald House is located at 795 Gatewood Drive near CHOA’s Egleston Hospital.

CHOA is also asking Brookhaven to rezone nearly two acres of land at 222, 2226 and 2228 North Druid Hills Road, where the former Piccadilly restaurant was located, from general commercial (C-2) to industrial (M). Plans are to construct a new main entrance into the medical campus on this site.

Brodrick said final design plans for the entrance won’t be finished until the Georgia Department of Transportation completes a report on proposed changes to the I-85 and North Druid Hills Road interchange as well as completion of the city’s North Druid Hills corridor study.

An updated site plan for the medical campus also includes modifications of internal roads and building orientations, such as a slight reorientation of the hospital towers to maximize views from the patient rooms, Brodrick said. CHOA’s understanding is these modifications do not need to be approved by the city, he added.

Two eight-story administrative “support” buildings and a seven-story parking deck are now under construction along the Northeast Expressway. The office buildings would house employees now working out of one-story buildings in CHOA’s office park on Tullie Road and Tullie Circle.

Construction of a new $1.3 billion hospital on the site of the old office complex is slated to start in 2020. The new hospital will have 446 beds in two patient towers expected to be between 16 and 19 stories tall. The new hospital will replace the 235-bed Egleston Hospital, located on Clifton Road near Emory University. Future plans for Egleston have not been determined, according to CHOA officials.

CHOA recently opened its new Advanced Center for Pediatrics at the campus.

Dyana Bagby

Dyana Bagby is a staff writer for Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta Intown.