The need for new hospital space and facilities is undeniable. I have to question whether the current hospital site has space to accommodate new construction or if it is at capacity.
It also goes without saying the disruptions new construction would cause.
I will cut to the chase.
The downtown of Red Deer has a large parcel of open land awaiting development as well as the fact that the downtown core is still dying a slow death. The time is now to redevelop the former city yards into institutional space: i.e. a hospital. As well, new courtroom (non-criminal) space could be built in the same area, without the demolition of the former RCMP detachment building or the historic Parsons House. This move alone would save the city the million dollar demolition costs of the old detachment.
A new hospital and courthouse building would attract professionals and their offices back to the downtown core instead of continuing the exodus of professionals to the county or areas outside the city core. Hopefully this letter will help start the discussion.
Jeff M. Hanson,
Red Deer County