Developer plans private health precinct at Kings Forest
A PRIVATE hospital could sit alongside the proposed new Tweed Valley Hospital, should a proposal by the developer behind the massive Kings Forest estate get off the ground.
Leda Holdings is preparing a revised tender after NSW Health Infrastructure reopened its expression-of-interest phase for six weeks following an outcry over the original proposed site at Cudgen.
Kings Forest's revised tender includes 32ha of land set aside for a "world-class medical precinct” which would sit adjacent to the proposed town centre of the development, on the eastern-most boundary of the 900ha site.
Kings Forest spokesman Reg van Rij confirmed Leda had been in discussions with private operators over the potential to create the precinct, including a private hospital with specialist consulting suites dedicated to aged care, medical research, accommodation and child care to complement the main Tweed Valley Hospital.
"The initial response has been very positive,” Mr van Rij said.
"There are more than 32 specialists that live in or around Casuarina and most of them travel to John Flynn and the Tweed Hospital to work each day.
"We have spoken to a number of them about the concept of the precinct and they are jumping at the chance to be part of it.”
Mr van Rij said education would also be a key focus of the precinct which would include medical training and research facilities, while a 1200-space car park and public transport access was also part of the planning.
"Aged care is also a critical need for the area and we are talking with several providers about an aged care offering within the new precinct,” he said.
The precinct will be complemented by accommodation for families of patients, affordable housing for nursing and allied health staff and childcare for the workers within the precinct.
Mr van Rij said Kings Forest was the only location large enough to deliver such a precinct.
"This is about providing world-class health services to the local community, having the space to do it and the infrastructure to support a health precinct on this scale,” he said.
"This is an opportunity to leverage the new Tweed Valley Hospital investment by the state with significant investment by the private sector to deliver a real health legacy for the region.”
The extended EOI phase closes on June 14.