ABOUT 10,000 tonnes of concrete will form the ground floor slabs for our multi-million dollar hospital expansion.
Workers are preparing the groundwork at Port Macquarie Base Hospital in readiness for six separate concrete pours which are expected at the end of next month.
They have also begun to pour the retaining wall for the new service access road.
Port Macquarie Base Hospital expansion project manager Jeff Pattinson said the work was on schedule and within budget.
“After January, we go upwards,” he said.
The $110 million project includes a 30-bed medical inpatient unit, 12 extra surgical beds, an expanded critical care unit, expanded emergency department and a cardiac catheterisation laboratory.
The hospital expansion will meet the needs of a growing and ageing population, often with complex health care requirements.
Extra car parking spaces fell under the project’s early works component.
Lyne MP Rob Oakeshott negotiated the hospital upgrade after the 2010 federal election.
The federal government contributed $96 million and the state government injected $14 million into the much-needed expansion.
Up to 200 workers are expected to be on site at the peak of the project.
Mr Pattinson said the contractor had a preference to engage local subcontractors and to use local building material suppliers where appropriate and possible.
The contract also contains Aboriginal employment targets.
The project is on a break during the Christmas period until January 4.
Construction remains on track for completion around the middle of 2014.