Hearing to decide future of recovery house in Zanesville postponed another month


Jarrett Barnhouse apologizes to the advocates scheduled to speak on behalf of Cairn Recovery after announcing his desire to table the meeting.

By Christine Holmes, News Director

A packed room of advocates and opponents of a recovery center planning to open a housing unit in the Putnam Historic District will have to wait another month before they can address the Zanesville Board of Zoning Appeals.

Thursday evening, Cairn Recovery Inc. was scheduled to present their business before the Board of Zoning appeal regarding a special use permit request.

If granted, Cairn would convert 216 Hazlett Ct.  into a housing unit for up to 14 men in recovery at a time.

The program lasts six months and is split into two phases with the first 90 days being dedicated to treatment for substance abuse and the last 90 days centered around preparing clients to enter the workforce and live on their own.

While describing the application to the board, Planning and Zoning Administrator Matthew Schley indicated his desire for a written security plan detailing what precautions will be taken including cameras and staffing.

“We would just be looking for something in writing. At this time, we have not received anything in writing,” said Schley. “It’s all been verbal commitments and staff likes to have things in writing.”

When it was the group’s turn to address the board, owner of Cairn Recovery Inc., Jarrett Barnhouse asked to table the hearing until the Feb. 13 meeting in order to prepare documents requested by the City of Zanesville’s community development office.

Barnhouse said his team intended to prepare those plans, anyway, and will work with the City’s requests.

“Again, I apologize for everybody that showed up in support of this venture, we just want to ensure that we do everything we can to get this permit approved and start saving lives, because that’s what this means to us,” said Barnhouse.

In addition to the individuals attending on behalf of Cairn were more than a dozen ready to speak in opposition of the facility.

Had she been given the opportunity to address the board, local business owner and resident of the Putnam Historic District Lori Wince would have explained why she believes Putnam isn’t the best fit for Cairn to operate.

“My business (Weasel Boy Brewing Company) is right across the street. I own another property right across the street, and I live a block-and-a-half away. So I’m kind of, it’s kind of in the middle of my world, so to speak,” said Wince.

Considering the businesses and homes in close proximity to the building at question, Wince believes there would be a negative impact on those already in the neighborhood.

“I feel like it’s in kind of a bad spot. There are two liquor-permitted establishments within a couple hundred feet, there residents that live within 30 feet of that place, so there’s definitely the potential for those people who live that close and who have young children to be affected by that,” said Wince. 

Instead, Wince believes small businesses such as restaurants, offices or art galleries would present less risk to families nearby and would better complement existing businesses.

Wince is active in community efforts in the area, including historic preservation advocacy, the development of Restoration Park and revitalization.

“I’m working with Friends of Putnam, a group that’s trying to make Putnam better than it ever has been,” said Wince. “So I guess, knowing that, you know, all the work that several of us have been doing to try to bring Putnam into people’s attention and do a lot down here that would make people want to come down here more often, this just doesn’t seem to fit with that either.”

During a meeting with the Friends of Putnam Monday evening, a member of Cairn’s clinical team, Cody Cain, expressed that the recovery center would be willing to help advance efforts being made in the area.

“We’re not part of your problem, we’re trying to be part of your solution. And whether that means offering a little bit of hope, stability, a way out for those who are plagued in the community, that’s what we’d like to be,” said Cain. “We’d like to work with all you guys to do whatever we need to do to help assist you to return Putnam to the glory that it used to have.”

The Zanesville Board of Zoning Appeals will hear the case once more at the next meeting on Feb. 13 at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers of city hall.

To learn more about Cairn Recovery, also see: Recovery organization sets eyes on Putnam for housing unit pending zoning approval