Preferred hospital site gets our thumbs-up

At first blush the preferred site chosen by the Cowichan Valley Regional Hospital District seems like a sound choice.

At first blush the preferred site chosen by the Cowichan Valley Regional Hospital District seems like a sound choice.

It’s early days, and, as with everything, there will no doubt be some in opposition to situating a new facility just south of the intersections of Herd Road and the Trans Canada Highway, on Bell McKinnon Road.

We’re interested to hear what the objections turn out to be, as it seems like a good choice at first glance.

The location just outside of Duncan is convenient enough to the city while providing enough property to build the necessary facility.

Road access is good and upgrades will be necessary, but we’re not talking twinning the Malahat here — a good thing for the pocketbook.

No doubt some of the neighbours will object to increased traffic  in their area, which is a valid concern and will be inevitable wherever the hospital locates.

On the plus side, having a hospital nearby can actually raise property values in neighbourhoods.

However, a hospital in this location would almost inevitably increase the pressure to develop more residential density in the surrounding area, and this spot currently boasts big properties that, while many of them are not being farmed now, obviously used to be, including the properties in question for the hospital itself.

While we are assured that the land is not in the Agricultural Land Reserve, it clearly could be used for farming and traditionally has been.

It is always sad to see former farmland — whether it falls in the Agricultural Land Reserve or not — eaten away by development. That is one of the strongest objections to the siting of the new police station near the

Cowichan Commons mall.

It is important to preserve the farmland we have that is close to our urban centres. Urban sprawl is something that all communities must guard against, and ours is no different.

This certainly seems to us to be the biggest pitfall at present but….

There is no doubt that Cowichan needs a new hospital.

We published a story several years ago now about how bits of the building were actually falling off.

It doesn’t get too much more cut and dried than that.

We’re thankful that there doesn’t seem to be any movement towards just simply closing up shop here in the Cowichan Valley in favour of shipping patients to bigger centres in Nanaimo or Victoria.

We wouldn’t put it past some of the bureaucratic bean counters who seem to love centralization above all things, whether it actually serves the population better or not.

We cannot think of a better site than the one being proposed that would be both big enough and still have the proximity to town.

So, weighing the pluses and the minuses, this one gets our initial thumbs-up.

Just Posted

Tim Schewe
Drivesmart column: Not securing your load could cost you big

An object of any sort falling off of the vehicle in front of you is definitely a surprise

Jared Popma recently streamed a live concert from the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre. (Ashley Daniel Foot photo)
21-year-old jazz artist talks favourite tunes and joys of music theory

Jared Popma recently streamed a concert from the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre

Vetch cover crop beginning to flower. (Mary Lowther photo)
Mary Lowther column: Vetch and crimson clover to the rescue of soil fertility

I add dry organic fertilizer as plants use up what is in the soil.

Sarah Simpson
Sarah Simpson column: A shift in perspective can sometimes change everything

Have you even been forced to wake up at 5:30 on a Saturday

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Most Read