Essex County Council has reached an agreement with Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust to commission a piece of work to assess a key site’s suitability for future redevelopment.
The council will work in partnership with the Trust to investigate the site in Lexden Road, Colchester, currently occupied by Essex County Hospital.
Some of the buildings at the 4.5 acre Lexden Road site are currently in use but are surplus to the Trust’s requirements and scheduled to become vacant when the Trust finally transfers the hospital’s services off of the site in 2018.
Essex County Council will work with Colchester Borough Council to develop a design and carry out due diligence and undertake engagement with local residents
This important milestone was reached through the hard work of local partners and the assistance of the One Public Estate programme. The site required a joined up approach across a range of partners and One Public Estate facilitated this process by encouraging support from the necessary stakeholders.
Sherin Aminossehe, Head of the Government Property Unit, said: "The hard work of local partners and the assistance of the One Public Estate programme shows how public sector bodies can deliver more for their communities when they work together.
"One Public Estate champions collaborative working in order to unlock local growth and deliver efficiency savings through smarter use of property and land, and it is great to see this in action.”
Nick Hulme, Chief Executive of Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Trust Board are very supportive of this innovative partnership approach. When the final health services are relocated from Essex County Hospital in early 2018, the site will be available to provide much-needed housing stock for the benefit of local people.”
Chris Howlett, the Trust’s Director of Estates and Facilities, added: “Our strategy is to centralise acute services at Colchester General Hospital where we have been developing new facilities. For instance in 2014 we opened a £25 million Radiotherapy Centre at the General and a new oncology/haematology ward.
More recently we have been working with Alliance Medical Ltd for the provision of diagnostic imaging services, such as MRI, PET-CT and nuclear medicine at the Turner Road site.
“This is an exciting time for the Trust where we are making a very positive investment to improve health services for the local people we are here to serve.”