THERE will be money allocated in the upcoming State Budget to provide a multi-deck car park for Wollongong Hospital.
The Minister for Health Jillian Skinner said $25.8 million will be provided for the project, which will see a 600 space car park completed in early 2015, at the same time as the new elective surgery unit admits its first patients.
The announcement comes after calls for better parking facilities around the hospital.
“This important investment will alleviate the parking issues in peak times and provide excess spaces at other times,” Mrs Skinner said.
Construction of the new car park is scheduled to begin late next year and while options for its exact location are still being considered, the connection to the hospital will be via the existing foot bridge across New Dapto Road.
Mrs Skinner said the new car park will complement Wollongong Hospital’s $86 million elective surgery unit, on which construction is expected to begin this year.
“This exciting new project will significantly boost the Illawarra’s critical care capacity,” Mrs Skinner said.
The purpose built facility will see seven new operating theatres constructed with 60 new surgical beds and a new 24-bed Intensive Care Unit / High Dependency Unit.
The expansion also includes:
* 12 extended day-only beds.
* 10 new close observation beds.
* Six additional Intensive Care Unit / High Dependency Unit beds.
* A new Central Sterilising Department, and
* New linen stores, loading dock area and food services works.
Mrs Skinner said the project is the largest and most significant capital works project undertaken at Wollongong for several years.
“The integrated unit will strengthen links with leading research bodies and increase the capacity of Wollongong Hospital as a major teaching and principal referral hospital for the Illawarra and Shoalhaven,” she said.