New Jersey hospital plans rejected for second time

Jersey Hospital
Image caption The revised plans would have had "serious impacts" according to Jersey's planning minister

Jersey's hospital should not be rebuilt on its existing site, the island's planning minister has ruled.

Deputy John Young turned down a second application for the £466m rebuild at the current site.

Deputy Young cited concerns over the development's impact on heritage, nearby residents, and its appearance.

The search for a new hospital site in Jersey started seven years ago, and it was hoped it could be ready for patients by 2025.

Deputy Young said: "My conclusion is that while the public interest benefits are significant, I don't believe they outweigh the serious impact of this specific proposal."

"I recognise my decision will lead to more work in order to resolve these issues," he added.

More than 50 sites had previously been considered for the new hospital, before being narrowed down to just four sites in St Helier, including the current site in the Parade, Overdale Hospital and the St Helier Waterfront.

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Timeline: Jersey's new hospital

Image copyright States of Jersey
Image caption Building the new hospital is the largest capital project undertaken by the island's government so far
  • 2012 - Planning for the new hospital begins
  • Feb 2016 - A public consultation is held for five potential sites and Jersey's Council of Ministers concludes the existing site is the best option
  • Dec 2016 - The site for the new hospital, the same site as the existing hospital on Gloucester Street in St Helier, is agreed by States members
  • Nov 2017 - Comptroller and Auditor General investigates the decision to select the hospital site for future development; Karen McConnell says she is concerned arrangements for making the decision are "poor" and taking "too long"
  • Dec 2017 - States Members agree to pay £466m for the hospital through a mix of borrowing and savings
  • Jan 2018 - A planning application is submitted for the hospital, but rejected after several concerns are raised by an independent inspector
  • April 2018 - A revised planning application is submitted
  • November 2018 - Hospital Policy Board releases report criticising the reasons other site options were discounted for the new hospital
  • January 2019 - Jersey's planning minister rules the second application for the £466m rebuild at the current site is unsuitable

Among the latest concerns raised about the rebuild was the "serious harm" it would cause to a 19th Century listed building on the site, and to other historic buildings nearby.

Deputy Young was also concerned by the size of the development, which would have led to "unreasonable harm" to nearby residents' living conditions.

The size, height and mass of the design was also criticised, as it would "result in a building that would be too large for this restricted site", Deputy Young said.

The planning inspector had not been able to recommend any other sites for the hospital because it would be too imposing wherever it was put, he added.

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