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December 2, 2021

Kingscliff confirmed as site for new Tweed Hospital

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The red soils of the Cudgen plateau will be home to the Tweed Valley Hospital after all, following a second site selection process by Health Infrastructure NSW. Photo Tweed Shire Council

The controversial original Kingscliff site for the Tweed Valley Hospital has been reconfirmed following a reselection process by NSW Health Infrastructure.

Health minister Brad Hazzard announced on Saturday (June 30) the new $534 million hospital would be sited on existing farmland opposite Kingscliff TAFE, ‘following extensive community feedback and support for the greenfield site’.

The state body was forced to go back to the drawing board after Tweed locals protested they’d had little chance for input prior to the original announcement and the site selection process lacked transparency.

Many also opposed the Kingscliff site, which sits on the state significant protected farmland of the Cudgen plateau.

The ALP announced meanwhile it was throwing its support behind an alternative site at Kings Forest. But that also had its critics including Tweed’s Team Koala, which said it straddled a koala corridor.

Three sites shortlisted

Minister Hazzard said that Health Infrastructure had shortlisted three sites ‘based on independent expert advice’ adding the assessment process was ‘overseen by an independent probity advisor’.

‘These three sites were assessed against the original evaluation criteria and this, along with community feedback, has confirmed that the proposed site opposite Kingscliff TAFE remains the best site for the new hospital.

‘The basis on which the Kingscliff (Cudgen) site has been chosen will be released to the community in an updated site selection report which [Health Infrastructure] will make public in the next week or so, after it has met the shortlisted landowners and briefed them on the assessment.’

Tweed MP Geoff Provest said ‘on behalf of the doctors and patients of the Tweed I am delighted that we can now get on with building our new Tweed Valley Hospital. From here on in it’s full steam ahead.’

‘During community engagement sessions, more than 600 people were spoken to, and nearly 700 written submissions were received. Around 50 per cent of people spoken to supported the Kingscliff site; a further 25 per cent were neutral; and the remaining 25 per cent opposed,’ he said.

Labor still unconvinced

The reselection process has not convinced the ALP, however, with the party’s Tweed candidate, Craig Elliot, calling it ‘a rotten decision by an out-of-touch government’.

‘No one has any faith in Geoff Provest, he has betrayed our community in selecting the Cudgen site over Kings Forest – “the people’s choice” for a new hospital,’ Mr Elliot said.

‘The NSW state election will be a referendum on the National Party’s plan to overdevelop Kingscliff by imposing a mega hospital on protected Cudgen farmland.

He added the government should hold off development on the site until after next March’s election.

‘The Nationals must put this to the people before proceeding any further on the protected Cudgen farmlands.

‘I call on the NSW Premier to come to a town hall meeting here in our community and explain her government’s decision to impose a hospital on state significant farmland,’ he said.

More information on the site is at www.tweedvalleyhospital.health.nsw.gov.au

 


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10 COMMENTS

  1. And the tractor plows on digging political furrows for our furrowed brow that when we don’t see eye to eye about a Hospital but we see red dirt it seems what could be moved will be Geoff Provest out of his seat in Tweed.

  2. This is where bi-partisan interstate-cross border relationship could be a ‘shared’ project to place the hospital location where the epicentre for the majority of population is at the site of Tweed Heads & Coolangatta with easy access from the MI and Gold Coast Hwy.
    I would like to know what the ambulatory personnel and A&E staff consider the logic of having the location at either Kingscliff or Kings Forest in comparison to the centre of the mass population?

  3. Geoff did follow the advise of the experts who build hospitals – they work for the government both labour and liberal and greens and nationals. He did not chose the site – others chose it and he and the Minister of Health agreed with the detailed reasons as to why it is the best site.

    Labour appears to have followed no one’s advise in choosing KF as the hospital – no experts just their own feelings that it may win them some votes. Geoff’s job is not just getting votes but looking after the health needs of this region

    The farmland needed for this “best hospital site”is only 0.13% of all SSF in the far north coast of NSW. It is only 0.00001% of all SSF in the entire state of NSW and it represents 0.0000001% of all significant farmland areas in Australia. I remind the reader we live in a nation not just a state. Vegetables can be grown in any part of this nation. This hospital cannot go in many other places in the Tweed (most are too low or too steep)

    If some farmland is gone then there will be a new hospital for the whole region in a flood free site – The unfortunate fact about KF is that most of it is below the Probably Maximum Flood level. Floods and hospitals do not mix.

    This is a debate only about the best site for a hospital site – not about overdevelopment of Cudgen. There are no other housing estates going in Cudgen SSF – that is another debate for hopefully 100years away. A new hospital in Cudgen is not precedent for a housing estate next door. Exaggerations are lies.

  4. Another short-sighted decision made by government, be they state or federal. That’s one thing they are certainly good at. Their attention spans always seem to be limited to their next elections.

    The State has previously declared the Cudgen plateau as being significant protected farmland. This decision to site the new hospital on that farmland, shows that development takes precedence over the future of growing food, in a planet that is rapidly running out of arable space due to development & over-population.

    Yes, I know we need a new hospital. but how hard have they really tried to find a suitable site? This “review” was always going to support the government’s previous decision. We’re not that stupid.

    As I said – short-sighted. Thank you Mr. Hazard (deliberate spelling) for another nail in the coffin of future food self-sufficiency. The penny will drop long after this mob of politicians are dead and gone.

  5. Appalling decision to place a major hospital on protected land, in a location with limited access roads that are frequently jammed up with traffic. Very limited public transport will create serious infrastructure issues.
    Most hospitals are placed in major population centres, not the middle of nowhere on prime agricultural land. This site is palpably unsuitable.
    Surely redevelopment of a multistorey complex hospital on the current site would be the best option.
    Expecially for patients, treating practitioners and visitors.

    • Could not agree more. A hospital needs to go where the bulk of the population resides. This decision must be changed.

  6. Great news. — new site purchased.
    Where did all the money come from to pay for full page adds Letter box drops etc. on opposition efforts to change the site. — Who would benefit from the hospital from the change to Kings Forest ?
    I am a Kingscliff home owner and resident ad I think lots of investigating has gone into the selection of his site,, The land was used to grow set potatoes. – last supermarket price. Was 99c Kg. — the primary producer would hardly make a living from that

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