GEORGE NEWS - Mediclinic George is silent on the progress of its development application for a new hospital. Manager Kassie Karstens did not want to comment on an enquiry in this regard save to say that "things are progressing, but the matter is confidential".
After the George Municipality last year rejected its application to build the hospital on the old sawmill site in Kraaibosch, the company started looking for alternative land.
The municipality's reason was that the particular site was located outside the urban edge and was not in keeping with the Spatial Development Framework.
The application for the R700-million regional hospital was launched in 2015 and Mediclinic at the time said they wanted to start building in 2018 because of an urgent need to expand.
Earlier this year at a George Herald business breakfast, Mediclinic CEO Edmund van Wyk said that their plans were on track and that an alternative site had been found. An agreement with the owner was in place, but the development was still subject to municipal approval. He did not want to reveal which property is being considered.
In November last year, a proposal was included in the George Council agenda to develop the land currently occupied by Glenwood Short Golf Course and George Riding Club. It contained a recommendation to earmark part of the land for institutional purposes with reference to "the evident need for a regional private hospital".
However, more detail on which private hospital was being referred to could not be obtained from the municipality, and Karstens at the time did not want to comment on whether or not Mediclinic was considering this site for their development. The item was withdrawn before it could be discussed by Council.
Another site mentioned as a possibility for a private hospital is a piece of municipal land (11,86ha) on the corner of York Street and the old Airport road (R102), abutting the western boundary of Mount View Resort.
It was advertised for sale last month on condition that bidders provide a comprehensive business plan and complete their proposed development within five years.
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