Thu, Aug 20, 2015 - Page 4 News List

New Taipei City hospital project receives approval

POLLUTION:The review committee stipulated that at least 80 percent of emissions must be contained and that air quality tests be conducted during construction

By Chen Wei-han  /  Staff reporter

A multibillion-dollar build-operate-transfer hospital project in New Taipei City’s Tucheng District (土城) yesterday passed an environmental impact assessment, with the center scheduled to be completed in 2020 to ease the city’s lack of medical resources.

The New Taipei City Government awarded the Chang Gung Medical Foundation the estimated NT$6.7 billion (US$205.1 million) project, which is to include a 16-story building housing 36 clinics, burn wards and a thyroid cancer treatment ward. The wards are to have capacity for 1,058 beds, including 499 in the emergency department.

The project was designed to expand medical resources in the city, which has the second-lowest density of emergency department beds in the nation at 19.34 beds per 10,000 residents, with western areas, including Tucheng, having only 15.07 beds per 10,000, significantly less than the Ministry of Health and Welfare’s target of 35 beds per 10,000, Chang Gung said.

The assessment committee approved the project at its third meeting of the first phase of the review, with the requirement that the center’s wastewater meet requirements on biochemical oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand and the permissible limits for organic, chemical and radioactive substances.

Furthermore, all existing trees at the construction site must be replanted, and the contractor must plant two trees for every tree that dies during construction.

The committee stipulated that Chang Gung should contain at least 80 percent of emissions and conduct air quality control tests during construction, as well as acquire the highest-level green building certification within six months of obtaining its operating license.

The project was the first to be reviewed by the committee since it was reshuffled last month.

New member and former Taipei Feitsu Reservoir Administration director Lee Kung-che (李公哲) said that the hospital’s wastewater would be discharged into the Gongguan Ditch (公館溝) and the Nanzih Ditch (湳仔溝) in Banciao District (板橋), which could affect the city’s potential sustainable development projects in that area.

Lee called on Chang Gung to reconsider its wastewater discharge plan and further tighten controls on emissions.

The Environmental Protection Administration’s Department of Water Quality Protection said that the contractor should monitor water quality both upstream and downstream of the Gongguan Ditch, as pollution source management at the hospital is key to pollution control.

The New Taipei City Environmental Protection Department said that another environmental review would be conducted to assess the impact of the hospital’s wastewater should the Nanzih Ditch be designated as a higher-level body of water or if the city government proposes new environmental plans for the area.

The construction site was a public cemetery near MRT Tucheng Station, with the cemetery being moved in a project that was completed in April.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top