Officially opened on 4 April, 2016, the $230 million Gold Coast Private Hospital in Southport is the first new Private Hospital to open on the Gold Coast in more than two decades and is designed to be able to expand and meet the needs of a rapidly growing population.
Statistics indicate that Queensland is one of the only two Australian States to show continuous population increases, and last year, recorded the highest number of new migrant arrivals in the country. The demands placed on service providers – such as hospitals, to cater to the needs of more than 546,000 Gold Coast residents living in the vicinity, will be considerable.
The hospital boasts $25 million worth of new equipment and has been further future proofed by its capability to expand the number of beds and operating theatres as and when required.
Situated on a Greenfield site opposite Griffith University and collocated with the new Gold Cost University Hospital, the new facility will have 284 beds and capacity to expand to 400; 13 theatres that can be extended further if required; a 24-hourEmergency department; a full range of medical specialities; on-site café and a 4-storey car park. More than 850 staff will be employed, significantly more than at the former Allamanda Private Hospital that it is replacing.
The physical nature of the site’s typography presented some challenges, with varying ground levels during the design and building phase. According to Brian McDonnell, Umow Lai’s Brisbane-based Mechanical Engineer, they were resolved by erecting a four-storey high building at the entrance that rises to seven at the rear. This ensured that the infrastructure can be readily shared with the adjacent University Hospital.
Umow Lai was engaged to develop a performance specification that provides an overreaching document, reinforcing the intent of the design and construction relating to the documentation of the engineering services.
Another key challenge was to be able to effectively communicate the outcome of the services for the client Healthscope Limited, and to coordinate the specification with all other documentation provided to the successful contractor, Watpac Pty. Ltd.
The supply of chilled water supply was sourced from the adjacent Gold Coast University Hospital and introduction had to be carefully coordinated by the design team to ensure the required demand, control and reporting, was accurately accounted for by all parties.
The Gold Cost Hospital project was managed by RCP on behalf of Healthscope Limited. The building was designed by architects DWP Suters and constructed by Watpac. Umow Lai provided a performance specification and acted in the role of ‘client’s engineer’ during the design and construction phase of the project.