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Village not retired

Friday, 7th May, 2010

The former St Joesph's High School The former St Joesph's High School

Southern Cross Care
(SCC) says it hasn’t
given up on its plans to
build a retirement village
on the former St
Joseph’s High School
site in Lane Street.
But chief executive
Allan Carter yesterday
said that the project was
now “back to the blank
paper stage” because the
present concept was economically
unviable.
SCC’s proposal
involved putting 24 units
on the Lane Street site
to help meet a shortage
in retirement living-style
accommodation in Broken
Hill.
The aged care provider
has an option to lease
or buy the site from the
Catholic Church.
But the plans were
shelved due to the large
amount of civil works
required on the site to
accommodate the units on
“three or four different
levels”.
Mr Carter said that the
high cost of the initial
development work meant
that SCC couldn’t put the
units on the ground at an
affordable price.
Reducing the number
of units also made the
project economically
unviable.
“The high school site
is on hold,” he said.
“We certainly haven’t
given up on the site but
our original plans don’t
work.”
Despite the setback,
SCC yesterday revealed
it had plans for another,
smaller retirement living
development close to the
school site.
Mr Carter said SCC
may build up to six units
on a residential block it
owns behind the school in
Chapple Street.
He said that its bought
the block around the time
it began working on the St
Joseph’s site, with a view
to developing both sites
as a single project.
Now SCC is investigating
the feasibility of
developing the Chapple
Street site on its own,
with the option of joining
it with any future St
Joseph’s project.
“We’re reasonably confident
we could make
it stand alone with six
units,” Mr Carter said.
He said SCC had
invested a considerable
amount of money on the
St Joseph’s site and had
not yet given up on it.
“We like the site ... it’s
just a difficult site.
“We’ve done a fair
bit of work on that site
so we’d like to continue
there.”
SCC’s major focus
now, however, was completion
of the new Harold
Williams Home in Eyre
Street and changing the
use of the War Veterans’
Hostel.
“They’re our focus at
the moment,” Mr Carter
said.
While the Harold
Williams Home was “a
little behind schedule”,
Mr Carter said SCC was
still confident it would
be occupied by the end of
the year.
He expected the current
War Veterans’ hostel
to be turned into a
retirement village within
three months of it being
vacated by residents.
“By the middle of next
year we’d hope to have
finished both projects.”

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