Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Dr. Is, finally, In

Atkinson Building, 17 Research Drive, Amherst

I first met Katherine J Atkinson (aka Dr. Kate), at a distance anyway, when she spoke before a packed church at a memorial service eight years ago for her Dad, Dr. Rollin Johnson, an orthopedic surgeon who gave a legion of patients, including me, a second chance at enjoying life via his gifted expertise with joint replacement.

The writer in me was struck by the unfairness of his sudden passing, only a year into a well-earned retirement.  His dutiful daughter directly addressed what a lot of us mourners were thinking, saying what we didn't  know is that her dad suffered a heart attack twenty years earlier, and fully recovered.

But, if he had succumbed then -- and not been able to help us overcome our debilitating ailments or to guide his daughter along the same path to becoming a healer -- that truly would have been the definition of "unfair."

So I find it both fitting and fair that after five l-o-n-g years of work, including contentious political debates before Amherst Town Meeting and the Zoning Board of Appeals, the Atkinson Building -- providing a new home to the Atkinson Family Practice --  would open for business less than a week before Christmas.

Amherst's very own, "Miracle On Research Drive."

The new building harnesses sustainable energy via solar panels on roof
Ginger, the color coordinated therapy dog
With 3,500  patients, having ten examining rooms cuts down on waiting


Anonymous said...

Nice advertisement!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful facility, and yes, I agree...they finally opened. Been a long time coming. How on earth were the Larkspur neighbors able to stall this project for so long when they knew all along it was zoned for business?????!!!!

Larry Kelley said...

The downside to a Town Meeting, Select Board, Town Manager, mega-Committee form of government.

Anonymous said...

And this is exactly why Amherst will always be reliant on property taxes to stay afloat. I drove through the center trying to think of places to shop locally as I opted to stay clear of any mall this year. I supported many small businesses and spent hundreds of dollars, but not one in Amherst, oh wait I did have beer and a slice of pizza if that counts. So sad the state of affairs this town has come to.

Anonymous said...

Nice building and touching story....I wonder what the Dad
would have thought of the new building?

Larry Kelley said...

Over on her Facebook page, where she posted the link to this story, she said in a Comment: "Somewhere my father is SOOOO proud of this building."

Tom McBride said...

It was delayed for so long because anybody who lives on Larkspur Drive knows how to pack a powerful political punch.

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas to all the misanthropes who comment on this blog.

May you finally find peace in 2013.

Anonymous said...

It was delayed so long because the "research park" was billed as something that would have limited traffic. Of course, once you build it you find excuses to add businesses that generate lots more traffic, which is something that neighbors have a right to be concerned about.

Chimps hate doctors. said...

"a powerful political punch"

Is that what that's called?