Nationwide Children's Hospital has the approval of the Westerville Planning Commission to add a third building to its campus at County Line Road and Cleveland Avenue.

Nationwide Children's Hospital has the approval of the Westerville Planning Commission to add a third building to its campus at County Line Road and Cleveland Avenue.

The commission voted unanimously Dec. 20 to approve a development plan for a two-story, 46,000-square-foot ambulatory surgery center.

The commission also voted to declare the development plan a minor modification from original plans for the site, meaning Nationwide Children's will not have to seek additional approval from Westerville City Council.

The building will sit at the northwest corner of County Line Road and Executive Campus Drive, just east of Alum Creek. The building itself will sit at the corner of the two roads, with a parking lot extending west to a 50-foot buffer zone with Alum Creek.

The building will follow the design of the other two Nationwide Children's buildings that will neighbor it, the sports medicine facility and the Close to Home center.

The ambulatory surgery center will be built in the same brick, with large glass windows and the same roofline.

The building also will have the large window graphics with photos of Westerville children. However, Westerville planning staff and planning commission members took issue with those graphics, ultimately limiting the new building to three graphics.

"They're a nice accent, but they're on the edge of being too much. They should be tempered," said commission member Paul Johnson.

The commission also voted down Children's request for a cabinet-style sign to match the signs on its other two buildings.

The signs break with Westar design standards, which call for signs with channel lettering. That was what was originally meant for the two other buildings, city planning and zoning officer Bassem Bitar told the commission.

When Nationwide Children's Hospital changed its name and logo, the new signs that were installed were the prohibited cabinet style, Bitar said.

"As you're trying to be consistent with your campus, we're trying to be consistent in this entire area," said commission member Diane Fosselman in voting down Nationwide Children's request to do a matching sign on the new building.

Overall, planning commission members said they were pleased to see the expansion of Nationwide Children's Hospital in Westerville.

The ambulatory surgery center will be the first of two new buildings that will sit on more than 10 acres at the northwest corner of County Line Road and Executive Campus Drive.

Once the expansion is complete, Nationwide Children's will have more than 250 employees in Westerville, said Patty McClimon, Children's senior vice president for planning and facilities.

The Westerville campus will be the largest of Nationwide Children's 17 off-site locations, McClimon said.

"This is good stuff, and we're awfully glad to have Nationwide Children's Hospital," said planning commission chairman Gerald Domanik.