But planning well underway, Department of Health says
The province has spent only $800,000 of the roughly $15 million allocated so far for a new psychiatric facility in St. John’s to replace the Waterford Hospital.
Plans for a new hospital were first announced in 2011 and there’s still no projected date for construction to begin.
This year’s budget committed $10 million to the planning and design. In budgets previous, government allocated $5.2 million.
Unspent funds are still earmarked for the project, a Department of Health spokeswoman said Friday by email.
The next steps include geotechnical and a hazardous materials assessment on the existing hospital, which would eventually be demolished.
A project manager was hired last fall. The spokeswoman said this week, Stantec, the consulting firm developing the master plan, held a series of planning sessions with Waterford staff.
Stantec got the $545,000 contract in February to devise a plan for adult mental health services, identify emerging demographics, program and service delivery trends; identify departments, locations, traffic patterns and exterior space; as well as lay out a hospital development phase plan, schedule and cost estimates.
According to Statistics Canada, institutional construction costs rose 3.5 per cent between 2011 and 2013.