The Department for Communities (DfC) has sold a portion of the Fort George site in Derry/ Londonderry to the Western Health & Social Care Trust.
Following an exercise in 2018, the Department agreed to work with the Trust to develop their proposal for a new Health and Care Centre (HCC) on the banks of the River Foyle. The sale has now finalised and the land has been disposed of to the Western Health & Social Care Trust.
DfC Director Pauline Campbell said: “The Department has been working with the Trust in a spirit of cooperation to secure the transfer of this land. Regeneration is a truly collaborative process involving government departments, stakeholders and the wider community.
“DfC is committed to delivering programmes that target the social, economic and physical regeneration of our communities, not just in Derry/Londonderry, but across the North West.
“As we hand this land over to the Western Health & Social Care Trust, we look forward to seeing the ambitious plans become reality.”
The Trust have taken ownership of a 1.7 acre parcel of the overall 11 acre site. The Department for Communities is working with other stakeholders to progress the development of the remainder of Fort George.
The Western Health & Social Care Trust has acquired land at Fort George to develop a major health and community care hub which will provide purpose built accommodation which will support the delivery of high quality integrated primary, community and acute services within the city side of Derry/Londonderry. This development will support a shift of services from hospital to primary and community care and accommodate a growth in activity. The facility will provide accommodation for multi-disciplinary working and will include the capacity for a broader range of diagnostic, treatment and care services to be delivered in a community setting.
It is anticipated that the development will create 250 new permanent jobs as well as centralising approximately 450 posts in a modern facility.
Following this acquisition the Trust will in the coming year be completing its detailed design and planning application, including final agreements on site access and parking in conjunction with the site owner.
The Trust Chief Executive Neil Guckian adds that this major development will facilitate changes in current delivery which will provide for an integrated care model which is flexible to changing needs, provides for improved clinical pathways and will enable the maximisation of opportunities from a range of service adjacencies. This development demonstrates the Trust taking the steps necessary to ensure the infrastructure is in place to address the growing demands across all our services.
Notes to editors:
1. Fort George is a former military base owned by DfC which is situated on the west bank of the River Foyle.
2. DfC received Outline Planning Permission for the Fort George Development Framework in December 2015 for a major mixed-use development.
3. Following an expression of interest exercise in 2018, DfC agreed to work with the Western Health and Social Care Trust to develop a proposal for a Health and Care Centre on the site.
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