BATHURST Regional Council will not be the one to give approval to plans for a new private hospital in the central business district, but it is doing everything it can to help plans come together.
In December, the Bathurst RSL Club announced that it was working with a development consortium on plans to establish a multi-level private hospital on the former Clancy Motors site in Howick Street, along with a multi-storey car park on the land behind the club.
A development application has yet to be lodged, but once it is, it won't be for council to determine.
Council's director of Environmental, Planning and Building Services, Neil Southorn, explained why in a report prepared for this Wednesday's meeting.
"The consortium has advised council that the two buildings (integrated medical centre and George Street car park) have a capital investment value significantly more than the $30 million threshold whereby the project is deemed to be State Significant Development," he said.
"Further, should the proposal become a development application, council's interest as a land owner of the car park means council cannot be involved in the determination.
"Upon lodgement of an application, council will be invited to comment, but will have minimal involvement with the determination of the application."
However, council has undertaken serious investigation into the proposal and engaged with the consortium.
Mr Southorn said a formal confidential submission from the consortium was received on February 2.
In anticipation of a formal proposal, council staff provided high level advice on planning issues, met with the architects and traffic consultant, and had preliminary discussions with the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment about the determination pathway.
Staff are also collecting traffic counts and occupancy data, have commenced a review on constraints to development on the cark park land, retained the services of two specialist advisory firms, and are reviewing the social and economic impacts of the project on the community.
Mr Southorn also noted that a hospital is permissible with consent, but variations to a number of development standards will also need to be addressed.
Councillors will have the opportunity to discuss the matter further on Wednesday, with a confidential report also to be dealt with.