Whitby, Oshawa, Pickering still scrapping over new hospital site for Durham Region

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Published October 17, 2021 at 4:28 pm

Lakeridge Health’s quest to find a suitable site for a proposed new hospital in Durham Region has moved on to Stage 2 in the selection process, though the health care group has not confirmed how many sites are on the list or where they are located.

This late in the game it is likely there are just three sites still in the running – one each in Pickering, Whitby and Oshawa – and that all three locations are near Highway 407.

Lakeridge Health said in a statement the next stage in the process will allow shortlisted proponents to provide additional supporting information and studies to allow the ‘Expert Panel’ – which will make the final recommendation – to identify the best site for a future hospital that will “meet the healthcare needs of all the communities in Durham.”

The Panel is made up of a diverse group of professionals with experience in health care and real estate development and is supported by an independent Fairness Advisor, who ensures that the site selection process is transparent and unbiased by all involved parties.

Lakeridge Health announced the Proposal Call process on September 21, inviting interested landowners in Durham to submit their sites for consideration. This came after a public consultation process that involved regional and municipal politicians and staff, residents and various subject matter experts.

Whitby has a 160-acre site on land owned by the Ministry of Transportation ready to go. The site is located in the middle of the region near Highways 407 and 412 and the border with the Town of Ajax and is considered the frontrunner.

Oshawa also has a site all picked out for the new health care centre on land immediately north of Durham College/Ontario Tech University and just south of Highway 407, smack dab in the middle of new housing developments along Britannia Road.

Pickering’s site has not been identified yet but it is also located in the north part of the city near Highway 407.

Lakeridge Health announced the beginning of a site selection process in June to identify and protect land for a proposed new hospital in Durham and subsequently launched a public consultation to give members of the community an opportunity to provide input on the process.

Nearly 13,000 people responded to a public survey and the organization also offered focus groups with subject matter experts and a Facebook Live community townhall.

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