Twizel medical centre a step closer

Fundraisers are edging closer to their dream of a new $1.8 million medical centre in Twizel, thanks to a sizeable donation.

The Mid and South Canterbury Community Trust announced this week it will donate more than $150,000 towards the project.

Fundraising committee chairwoman Joy Paterson said she was delighted with the donation. Since September, the High Country Medical Trust has raised $1.37m towards the project.

"I'm over the moon. It's an incredible, generous offer, and it puts us that much closer," Paterson said.

"I think if we can keep plugging away, we should be able to reach our fundraising target by October. From there, we would hope to start building by February."

Paterson said there had been several sizeable donations over the last few months from organisations, with amounts of $20,000, $100,000 and approximately $250,000 from the Aoraki Foundation, Trust Aoraki and the Twizel Wine Club respectively.

"It's built up momentum, but we can't take our foot off the throttle just yet. We definitely need to keep knocking on those doors, so to speak."

Paterson said the Mackenzie District Council had pledged $330,000 towards the project, as well as offering a site for the new centre. The new medical centre, designed by Parker Warburton Team Architects, of Dunedin, will be situated in Mackenzie Dr near the fire and ambulance stations in Twizel.

Paterson said it was vital the town had a new medical centre, as the current site had only two emergency rooms.

"There are more than 1700 regular patients on the books but this number can be twice that over the summer holidays, as visitors flock to the town," she said.

"The Alps2Ocean cycle trail has also been a boon for tourists to the area, but even that brings with it difficulties.

"More cyclists also means more people getting injured and needing treatment."

The Timaru Herald