The $30 million multi-storey car park project at Wagga Wagga Base Hospital involves the planning, design and delivery of a free, 6-level car park as well as street-level parking at two different areas on the health campus.
At the completion of the $431 million Wagga Wagga Health Service Redevelopment and the multi-storey car park project, there will be over 900 car parking spaces on the health campus - more than double parking spaces on the campus in mid-2020. This includes over 350 car spaces in the multi-storey car park, over 150 spaces on Docker Street and over 80 spaces on Yathong Street.
The NSW Government announced $30 million for the multi-storey car park project in 2018.
The project is expected to be completed in late 2022.
Health staff and services were relocated from Lewis House, a former Nurses' Home, to the new Health Services Hub in May 2021 as part of the final stage of the $431 million redevelopment of the Wagga Wagga Base Hospital campus.
The demolition of the vacant, three-storey building in early 2022 along with the nearby former dental clinic, will make way for a street-level car park on Docker Street for over 150 cars.
The demolition is part of the $30 million multi-storey car park project which was granted approval by the Joint Regional Planning Panel in early 2021.
Accommodation for students on placement at Wagga Wagga Base Hospital ceased at the end of 2019 as the age and condition of the accommodation meant Lewis House was no longer fit-for-purpose.
Lewis House was officially opened as a two-storey Nurses' Home in 1953 and named after the then Hospital Chairman, Daniel E Lewis. It was completed by HC Buckman builders. Historian Sherry Morris writes in, A Delicate Balance, A History of Wagga Wagga Base Hospital;
There were twenty-five bedrooms each with built in wardrobes and dressing tables. The building contained linen cupboards, lounge, sewing and writing rooms and a sun balcony as well as a kitchenette. A self-contained flat for the matron was also included.
The Nurses' Home was later expanded to an 88-bed facility. The three-storey building was officially opened by the Minister for Health, the Hon WF Sheahan in 1961. Historian Sherry Morris notes in her work, Wagga Wagga: A History, it was was built by Ernest Haupt Pty Ltd for 100-thousand pounds and the Minister handed the keys to Matron Miss EA White.
In 2021, Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD) engaged with interested groups in recognising the role of Lewis House as a former Nurses’ Home.
These groups include the Wagga Wagga and District Historical Society and the Museum of the Riverina. MLHD worked with the Museum to remove items of interest from Lewis House ahead of the demolition.
A plan for tours of the building by former nursing staff were cancelled in July 2021 due to the risk posed by the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.