Project update, December 2016

When the new Bendigo Hospital is opened in late January 2017, it will be home to one of the most up-to-date healthcare facilities in Australia, providing a world-class setting to treat and care for the residents of the Loddon Mallee region, close to home.

One highlight this month was Community Tours Day, when on Saturday December 3, Bendigo Health staff and volunteers, along with staff from the Bendigo Hospital Project teams welcomed around 3000 people, to experience the highlights of the new building. The three tours included features such as viewing intensive care units, the emergency department, the psychiatry precinct and inpatient rooms. You can experience the virtual tours by following this link:

While some works still continue, we are seeing 60 workers on site, a number that is reducing as the focus turns to external landscaping, while internally operational testing continues. By Christmas we envisage 40 workers will be on site. The landscaping this month includes the installation of outdoor fixtures such as bench-seats, drinking fountains and bins around the borders of Arnold, Mercy and Drought Streets. Tree planting and soft landscaping continues at the Mercy Street forecourt, while paving works are in progress in the therapeutic garden area.

The wayfinding signage is one of the keys to a great visitor experience and this month we will see the completion of both the wayfinding and all major building signage, inside and out.

Much of the furniture and equipment has arrived and is being installed, while artwork is starting to appear throughout the building, such as the traditional dreamtime works being installed in the Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) courtyard, and the stunning courtyard mural being created on level two’s psychiatry precinct.

The hospital’s heritage precinct works have made significant progress during November. For the historic Anne Caudle Centre building, these works have meant the installation of a new lift, which is disability-compliant. Contractors, Kane Constructions, have reduced activity this month, with four workers currently engaged through Bendigo Health, and some heritage precinct works will resume in the new year.

Technical completion (TC) of stage one of the new hospital was reached on November 14, one month earlier than scheduled. The Minister for Health, Hon. Jill Hennessy MP and Member for Bendigo East, Jacinta Allan MP, visited the site, to mark this highly important milestone in the life of the Bendigo Hospital Project. Early TC has brought about an opportunity for Bendigo Health to experience the new hospital environment earlier, during what is known as the ‘transition phase’. This allows each department and its staff to be appropriately prepared for their relocation, ensuring a seamless move, with the continuity of patient care.

External construction progress can still be monitored on the webcam available at the Bendigo Hospital Project website home page.