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The Greater Bendigo City Council has agreed to start the formal process to sell land in Atkins Street North Bendigo for the construction of high quality, apartment buildings to accommodate medical staff undertaking post graduate studies at the Bendigo Hospital.
City of Greater Bendigo Mayor Cr Rod Fyffe said with 2,500 staff the Bendigo Hospital is already the largest employer in our region and this figure is expected to increase to 3,500 staff when the new hospital is built. The new hospital will attract many highly skilled professionals to Bendigo and these people will require accommodation.
“A consortium appointed by the Bendigo Health Care Group to design and construct accommodation for medical staff identified land adjacent to the existing North Bendigo Oval as suitable because of its close proximity, within 700 metres, of the new hospital to allow medical staff to walk to their workplace.
“The land which is already zoned residential is mostly privately owned and has been agreed to sell for this project. However a smaller area which is needed for the development to proceed is owned by the City of Greater Bendigo,” said Cr Fyffe.
“The development addresses many of the aims contained in the City’s strategies in terms of higher density housing in key activity precincts, high quality and sustainable design and developments that lessen the use of cars. In addition this is part of a solution to provide a medical workforce for our region for the long term as there is ample evidence that people often choose to stay and work where they do their training.
“Bendigo Health currently rent over 130 houses throughout Bendigo to accommodate trainee doctors who have completed their base qualifications and are now training to be specialists. When completed, this new accommodation facility will ultimately help alleviate the City’s current rental shortage by freeing up those homes.
“Council is proposing to sell the land at market value and use the proceeds to fund improvements to the existing recreation reserve when a master plan for the reserve is completed.
“Consultation with the sporting groups who use the reserve and nearby residents has already taken place. We know that not everyone agrees with this development and that some residents do not want the area to change.
“After listening to the concerns of the residents at a community information night and following further discussions with residents who properties are right next door, the design of the building has been changed to reduce the height to two storey’s, and the visual impact where there are immediate neighbours.
“Council acknowledges that the development will be a considerable change for the area but believes that such a high quality development will ultimately benefit the overall community in both the short and long term.
“As our city grows we can expect to see more of these types of developments occurring throughout Greater Bendigo,” said Cr Fyffe.
“Council will now advertise its intention to sell the land however a planning permit must also be approved before the project can proceed.
“Residents will also have further opportunities through both the sale of land and the planning permit processes to have their say on the project and Council will consider all feedback as part of its formal decision making.
“While the developers have said they would like to be under construction by the end of this year Council believes this is a very optimistic timeframe. We want to make sure everyone has ample opportunity to have their say on the proposed development and land sale,” said Cr Fyffe.
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Updated: 12:20 PM, 20 October 2011
195-229 Lyttleton Terrace
Bendigo Victoria 3550
PO Box 733
Bendigo Victoria 3552
Telephone: (+61 3) 5434 6000
Fax: (+61 3) 5434 6200
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