Why is the Trust developing Hospitals of the Future?
Across the UK, healthcare is changing. More care that would have been provided in hospital in the past is now being provided closer to home, in the community. Hospitals are increasingly becoming places for highly specialised care or complex treatments, or services like day-case surgery.
By building the two new hospitals at Leeds General Infirmary (LGI), Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust is looking ahead to the future for patients from Leeds, West Yorkshire and beyond. We want to continue to innovate and to offer patients new ways of receiving healthcare based around the latest treatments, technologies and research.
By designing and building new hospital buildings from scratch we are in a unique position to achieve this and to deliver healthcare that is sustainable in the future.
What stages does the Trust need to go through to achieve this vision and when would it start work?
For a project of this size, there are a number of stages to complete and approvals to be given before work can begin.
We need to apply for and secure Outline Planning Permission, finalise an Outline Business Case for the development and explore funding options before we can proceed to a full planning application and move towards starting to build.
Once we have our approvals, the building would be completed in phases.
Phase one could begin as early as 2020 and would include work the Trust wants to do in order to centralise its Pathology service at St James’s and to prepare the site at the LGI so building work for the new hospital can begin.
We aim to start building the two new hospitals in 2021, with these works taking approximately three years to complete.
By 2025, we hope to have finished building the two new hospitals, following which we will start work to demolish the Clarendon Wing and repurpose some of the buildings at the LGI site in order to further define and establish the Leeds Innovation District.
How will the programme be funded?
The Trust has a long way to go in planning for the new development but over the next few months it will explore a number of funding options. These may include public capital, external funding such as public/private partnership funding, charitable funding or a mixture of these. At this stage, no decisions on funding have been made.
What will happen to buildings like the Gilbert Scott Building on Great George Street? Are you planning to turn this and Brotherton Wing into apartments?
It’s too early to say what might be developed on these sites – our planning application is initially only for the two new hospitals.
The buildings will not be available for development for another five years and in that time, it’s likely that the landscape for development will have changed. The possible uses for them will be part of a city-wide collaboration to establish an Innovation District in the area, focussed on developing opportunities for research, innovation and medical technologies.
Listed buildings like the Gilbert Scott Building are iconic landmarks and although they can no longer be used for modern healthcare, the Trust will work with agencies like Historic England to offer them for sympathetic redevelopment and preserve them for generations to come.
Will parking at the LGI be improved?
The Trust is working with Leeds City Council to plan and design future parking arrangements at the LGI site. Although there is a lot of detail to be developed, our initial plans will allow for an extra 200 parking spaces (subject to approval) as part of a central car park that will be directly opposite the entrance to the new hospitals.
Our planning with Leeds City Council is ongoing, and over the next couple of months we’ll be looking at how we can add even more parking spaces for patients and visitors as part of the future development. We will also continue to explore a range of solutions to make the LGI site and services as accessible as possible as part of our site-wide Transport Plan.
Will there be green areas and outdoor spaces?
Yes we will be seeking to incorporate as much soft landscaping within the site and the re-purposed site area as possible creating a range of public, semi-public and private external spaces for visitors, patients and staff to enjoy.
Is anything proposed for other hospital sites?
Yes. Although the Trust’s planning application in December is focussed on the building of the new adults’ hospital and new Leeds Children’s Hospital, our Hospitals of the Future programme is a long-term investment across our sites.
We want to centralise our Pathology services at St James’s and in the future we also hope to deliver some improvements to streamline the patient flow into and around our two Emergency Departments at the LGI and St James’s. This will include working with Commissioners to develop plans to co-locate two new Urgent Treatment Centres.
As part of our vision for the LGI, we also have an ambition to centralise our maternity (and neonatal) service. Before any decisions could be made on this, though, NHS England and NHS Leeds CCG will lead a formal consultation on the proposals.