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Five-years of construction worries for new CDH close window on current site
Don't expect our new Cowichan District Hospital to be built on its current Gibbins Road site.
Rob Hutchins, Cowichan Valley Regional Hospital District chairman, cited a recent master-site plan to explain how the current 12.8-acre site poses a passel of problems if the new hospital were build there.
For one thing, CDH's vital medivac helipad would be grounded during four to five years of construction.
The 45-year-old site is also sloped, posing seismic and design glitches.
Disruption of patients and staff, plus additional construction costs — before the current facility was demolished — posed worries too.
Those issues would also plague an option of adding new wings to asbestos-lined CDH, he indicated.
"The recommendation from the master site plan is to look for another site," Hutchins said of Island Health's 2010-11 document.
It's ordered mapping of the valley's 500-year flood areas to ferret historically dry properties — of various, unknown prices — for the new CDH costing $350 million-plus, and serving Cowichanians about 50 years.