MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — A proposal to build a 12- to 16-bed “crisis-stabilization unit and detox center” at the Buyers Guide building in Martinsburg will be the subject of a public hearing during Tuesday’s meeting of the Martinsburg Board of Zoning Appeals.

Peter J. Callahan PLLC, doing business as Callahan Counseling Services in Martinsburg, has asked the zoning board for a special exception to create the facility at the property off South Raleigh Street.

Callahan WV MetroNews affiliate WEPM last month the facility would be staffed 24 hours a day, with an average patient stay of four to 10 days.

He said that while it would not be a lock down facility, people would not be able to simply wander out the door.

“The staff are going to be trained on retention,” he said. “They’re going to be able to say ‘look, if you want to leave that’s fine but we have to have somebody come and sign for you.”

Residents in the surrounding neighborhood have raised concerns about the impact such a facility could have on safety.

Callahan does not foresee any issues.

“I don’t think that there’s going to be any problems, as there aren’t in any other facilities in the state.”

Callahan said the location will not make everybody happy, but says they are somewhat limited in where they can locate.

“Believe it or not there are requirements from the state as to where such a facility can go. It has to be in certain proximity to hospitals.”

Callahan expects the facility to be used as a drop off site for law enforcement as well.

He said the Eastern Panhandle hasn’t had such a facility since the mid-1990s.

The hearing is set for 6:30 this evening.

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