New hospital building due in four years

Last updated 05:00 03/07/2014

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Christchurch Hospital will have a new 400-bed building by 2018 to meet an expected spike in demand, thanks to special legislation.

The Ministry of Health asked Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee to exercise his powers under section 27 of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act 2011, to ensure prompt delivery of the city's new Acute Services Building at the rear of the women's hospital.

Brownlee said using the act would ensure the new building was operational by April 2018.

"Serious damage to the Canterbury District Health Board's facilities combined with a growing and ageing population means existing facilities will not be sufficient for Christchurch's population by 2018."

Health Minister Tony Ryall said the building would deliver new operating theatres, 400 beds, purpose-designed facilities for children, an expanded intensive care unit, a state-of-the-art radiology department, a new emergency department, and a rooftop helipad.

Preliminary design work had just been completed, and construction would begin within months.

Brownlee had put in some mitigating conditions to reflect the potential for effects on Hagley Park and the surrounding environment.

Redevelopment of Christchurch and Burwood Hospitals is a $650m government investment in Canterbury health facilities - the biggest in New Zealand.

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