Multi-storey carpark back on the agenda for Lismore
LISMORE'S phantom multi-storey carpark is back, and this time it's headed for the hospital precinct.
The carpark, which has been debated on and off over the years as a solution to parking congestion in the CBD, was raised as a possible solution to parking problems now facing the area around Lismore Base Hospital.
Increased pedestrian access around Hunter St, and a green light for higher density housing were two of the other proposals that emerged from the "charette" discussions between the health service and Lismore City Council.
After last week's talk-fest, Northern NSW Local Health District chief executive Chris Crawford will now chair a joint steering committee aiming to take several proposed LEP changes to the next stage.
The committee will consult with a local residents' focus group during the hospital's redevelopment process, with community consultation to begin in February 2013.
Mr Crawford said residents living near the hospital raised three main concerns at the workshop - car parking, traffic, and noise.
We want to grow in a way that is neighbourly, and tries to meet the concerns and priorities of the local residents, Mr Crawford said.
He also emphasised the importance of coordinated cooperation between council and the hospital to securing funding for further upgrades.
"We believe if you can see a council and a health service working cooperatively together, that creates a good climate and that's what government is looking for," Mr Crawford said.
The health sector is the biggest and fastest growing employer in Lismore, currently recording 4.2% growth per year with the nearest competitor retail well back on 2.3%.
The hospital redevelopment is the largest capital works program ever undertaken in Lismore.
Council's executive director of sustainable development Brent McAlister said the charette was vital to ensuring all stakeholders were properly involved in the long-term vision for the expanding health precinct.
"We're all committed to ensuring we have a top-notch health precinct whilst also being mindful this is an area where people live and work," he said.
"This has cemented a commitment to bring all our needs to the table, to look at difficult issues and work together with the community to resolve them."
A report on the draft outcomes will be made available on Council's website in December.