Children's Hospital in final stages of design
PUBLIC representatives will meet with senior figures from the new National Children's Hospital next week for a final briefing on the controversial plans for its construction.
TDs and city councillors have been invited for a sit-down talk on the St James's campus, with the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board Project Director expected to lodge planning permission within days.
The meeting will take place on Tuesday and project director John Pollock will go through the final designs for the hospital.
In an invitation sent to politicians, it has been outlined that changes have been made since they were last presented with the plans, following extensive public consultation. The CEO of the Children's Hospital Group, Eilish Hardiman, will also give an overview of the new model of care for paediatrics for the hospitals.
Also on the table will be the recent announcement by Minister for Health Leo Varadkar (pictured right) about the transfer of the Coombe Maternity Hospital to St James's.
The meeting will also address the community benefit clause that comes with the hospital.
The long-awaited hospital has been beset by numerous delays.
It was originally promised for 2016, but it will be 2020 before it becomes fully operational.
The controversy surrounding the €650m project began when planning permission to build it on the Mater site was refused in 2012. The decision to relocate the planned facility, the largest of its kind in the history of the State, to the Dublin 8 campus also caused a stir.
Campaigners believed that Connolly Hospital in Blanchardstown offered a better alternative.
The timeline for submitting planning permission for the new St James's campus was also delayed last year.
The building will be seven storeys high at it tallest point, with 42 beds in critical care units and 18 neonatal critical care units. All 380 single-patient bedrooms will have en-suite bathrooms and an overnight bed for new parents.