Monday, July 31, 2006

Royal Bournemouth Hospital Expansion Proposals

I wanted to pass on the outcome of the planning applications made by Royal Bournemouth Hospital to the Planning Board this evening.

The first application, which was for the provision of new renal and cancer care units, alongside additional office accommodation and staff accommodation and a multi storey car park on the existing hospital site was passed by the planning board by a margin of 10:0. I spoke in favour of the proposal, but requested that a further study of traffic flows and consequent alterations to the Deansleigh Road junction and Castle Lane East between here and the Cooper Dean Roundabout be conducted. This wasn’t agreed.

My request that the hospital be required to undertake a local parking impact survey and contribute to the cost of any further parking measures needed as a result of the development was agreed by the Board.

The second application was for the provision of the same accommodation but on the Wessex Fields site, to the north east of the hospital site, where Troika want to build their office development. This application was opposed by the council officers, who still prefer to see the office development built (regardless of its impact upon our neighbourhood).

I spoke in favour of the application, asking though that consideration be given to a new entrance and exit for the hospital site on the Wessex Way to relieve congestion Castle Lane East. I feel that granting permission for health facilities on the site will set a precedent which prohibits commercial development and ring fences the area for health care facilities, be it those that are considered now or others in the future.

The Board agreed with the officers to refuse the application, but by only a majority of 5:4 with one abstention. This application is now likely to be debated at the council meeting on September 12th.

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