Community Group to undertake due diligence on old Byron Hospital site

The local group working to keep the old Byron Hospital in community hands will engage experts to inspect the site, including an evaluation of possible asbestos contamination.

The head of the Byron Hospital working group, Chris Hanley, said the evaluation was part of the ‘due diligence’ being done by the community as it developed its proposal for the  2,000sqm site.

‘We want to make sure that if we’re successful in acquiring the building that we know what the state of structure is,’ Mr Hanley said.

‘We will also soon be undertaking a tour of the site with the architects.’

The community has put forward a range of ideas for the future of the site, including ‘crisis accommodation, affordable accommodation on limited tenure and a facility that could deliver services similar to the now defunct Fletcher Street Cottage.

Though the land is owned by the State Government and so could be sold to a developer or other private enterprise, NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard has promised that locals will be given the first opportunity to make their pitch.

Mr Hanley said that at a recent meeting of departmental officials, state politicians, community and council representatives, the deadline for the community to put forward its proposal was extended.

‘The deadline was extended from April 30 to June 30 to give the community a bit more time to finalise its proposal,’ Mr Hanley said.

‘I would encourage organisations that want to be part of the site to send me letters of intent.’  

Ideas can be emailed to [email protected] 

3 responses to “Community Group to undertake due diligence on old Byron Hospital site”

  1. Una Fini says:

    What about the old story of radiation contamination from sandmining in this area of Byron? Was that dealt with already?
    I do hope the community can obtain this site. Kind of sceptical since its state government and they can sell to developers… Mr Hazzard’s “promise” to give locals a first opportunity to make their pitch sounds like a pretty empty promise to me. Money talks to this state government…

  2. Dailan Pugh says:

    The hospital site is already community land, we just need to make sure it is not privatised. I would like to see the State maintain some involvement and use it, in part, to provide a range of Government services along with opportunities for local community activities.

    • Liz says:

      More space opportunities in Byron for local community activities would be welcome, if we are still enough of a community for such things to occur. The ‘community and exhibition’ space in the library building is now just the exhibition space aka, The Lone Goat Gallery. Not accessible for book launches, author talks or other library or Friends of the Library activities, exhibitions of HSC art, small music recitals etc. more a commercial sales than a community space. Funny how this stuff happens.

      The hospital site though is valuable commercial land. Although fraught with pitfalls what if Byron Council could develop it to lease for lucrative activities like legal holiday accommodation, and use the funds to provide the services and facilities for locals in areas with parking and less stressful and congested areas of town.

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