The planning process for the $ 1.47 billion project can be accelerated with legislation passed at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic to speed up ‘ready-to-go’ construction projects to revive the economy after the first level 4 lock.
Sandra Balcombe, Land and Oceans Officer at the Environment Protection Authority (EPA), allowed the project to go through the fast-track process at the start of the recent lockdown.
A spokesperson for the project said demolition work at the site was ahead of schedule before the imposition of Level 4, so it had not been affected and planning work was able to proceed. continue with little impact.
The consent request confirms that the new hospital is expected to have three link bridges – two on St Andrew St to connect the two main hospital buildings and one on Castle St to connect the inpatient building to a logistics center to be built at Bow Lane .
Documents have been filed with the EPA for the excavation, earthworks, dewatering and foundations, and the Department of Health expects plans and reports to detail construction and management of the new hospital later this year.
“Advancing the consent of the enabling works separately from the consent of the second stage of the main construction offers the best opportunity to ensure that these delays are avoided, and that the regional and national economic stimulus offered by the NDH project occurs as planned “, indicates the request of the ministry.
The smaller outpatient care building, north of the city center site, is built on alluvial gravel, but the larger inpatient care building, to be built on the former Cadbury factory site, will be built entirely on reclaimed land.
The authorization documents showed that considerable dewatering work would be required at the hospital patient construction site to allow its basement to be waterproof.
Planners had considered both bored piles and driven piles for the inpatient building, and after extensive testing recommended the use of steel tube piles driven from below.
Not only did they perform well in testing, they were more cost effective, highly reliable and produced less noise and vibration, according to an independent report.
Reinforced concrete rotary bored piles are still the preferred type of foundation for the link bridge structure spanning St Andrew Street to the outpatient building.
Water and oxygen supply tanks will be constructed near the historic dairy and machinery buildings and the Allied Press building.
The structural condition of these buildings made the driven piles unsuitable and it was proposed to build these tanks on a concrete base, using micropiles.
There are considerable parts of the site with contaminated soil, much of which is covered with existing concrete slabs or paving.
The planners proposed to leave them in place and remove them, along with the contaminated soil, only for the pile and trench work.
Part of the soil at the site had been designated as usable for backfill and would be reused, but part was unsuitable and would have to be removed.
Subject to agreement, the earthworks of the ambulatory building would begin in February 2022 and would last four months.
Work on the hospital building will begin in 2023.
The Request Assessment Committee will seek comments on the request, then seek comments on any draft conditions, before making its decision.