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After decades of lobbying the push for more parking at the Innisfail Hospital is a step closer with representatives of Good Counsel Primary, Cassowary Coast Regional Council and Member for Hill Shane Knuth having a successful meeting with the Minister for Health office and the Minister for Transport office this week.
Mr Knuth said he had raised the matter in parliament, tabled a petition and had meetings with the previous Health Minister over the need for upgrades and they were finally getting traction.
“The lack of parking at the hospital is a massive pressing issue, especially with the elderly trying to navigate their way to the hospital with the lack of available parking and steep hills,” Mr Knuth said.
“If something is not done, the situation will only get worse for everyone with schools and other services in close proximity to the hospital.”
Cassowary Coast Regional Council mayor Mark Nolan said the need for additional car park spaces is vital to ensure patients and visitors have ease of access to the facility.
“The community has voiced their frustrations over the lack of parking available at the hospital. This project proposes an additional 50 parking bays which will ensure visitors and patients have a designated parking area which is in a close proximity to the hospital,” Cr Nolan said.
“It is important that we look after our elderly, parents with young children and people in need and this is a simple step to putting these people first.”
Cassowary Coast Regional Council division four councillor, Nick Pervan said nearby school, Good Counsel Primary School had also been heavily involved in the planning of this project. Improving road safety for students is another important facet of this project.
“I would like to thank Shane Knuth for his efforts in helping to seek funding support from the state government and for the Lioness Club, who alongside local residents have made a concerted community-led effort to raise this matter to improve car parking and safety along this section of road,” Cr Pervan said.
Innisfail Lioness Club board director Jill Sorenson said this had been going on for years.
“I just hope this comes to fruition as the car park is full all the time, even out of visiting hours,” Mrs Sorenson.
“It has always been a problem, and something needs to be done.
“It isn’t great for people who have to park down near the school and have to walk up the hill. No wonder their blood pressure is high when they get to the school.
“This isn’t good enough. It will be a big job but it will be good in the long run.”
Caption: Good Counsel Primary School P&F member Peter Schramm, Member for Hill Shane Knuth, Innisfail Lioness Club members Marsha Nolan, Catherine Caltabiano and Jill Sorenson, Cassowary Coast Regional Council councillor Nicholas Pervan and mayor Mark Nolan inspecting the existing carparking around the Innisfail Hospital. PHOTO: Supplied.
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