THUNDER BAY -- The regional hospital is hoping to make parking issues at the facility a thing of the past.
The Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre is spending more than $1 million to expand their parking areas, with a plan of adding 300 additional spaces by the end of October.
Anne-Marie Heron, the hospital’s executive director of capital planning and operations, said developments such as the new Health Services Centre, which is under construction off Oliver Road, have necessitated an increased number of spaces.
“It was always in our master plan for the hospital,” Heron said. “In the long-term planning for the hospital, when you project increased expansions and program offerings we did recognize we would need additional parking so we’ve been doing a phased approach.”
The expansion is currently under construction about 200 metres from the Golf Links Road entrance to the hospital. It will bridge the gap between existing lots on the property.
The hospital sought approval from both the provincial Ministry of the Environment as well as the local conservation authority before breaking ground. The expansion will not affect existing animal habitats and storm water management practices.
Heron said the new area should satisfy the current parking requirements at the facility.
“At the end of this we will have the additional 400 spots our master plan projects we will need,” she said. “If we have additional new programs there might be a need for new parking.”