Retailers add voice to hospital campaign

A group of central Dunedin retailers and building owners has weighed into the debate over the future of Dunedin Hospital, saying it must stay in the central city.

Heart of Dunedin Inc has got behind the Dunedin City Council's Dunedin Hospital SOS campaign.

The campaign was launched last week to keep the hospital in the CBD, with the same services.

Heart of Dunedin spokesman Simon Eddy said yesterday the issue was ''of tremendous significance'' to retailers.

The hospital was a large employer that brought people into the CBD who spent ''many many millions of dollars'' that would be lost if it moved away.

The group has written to Prime Minister Bill English supporting the council's campaign.

The letter called on the Government to ''immediately and publicly dismiss the consideration of any locations outside of the CBD''.

Mr Eddy, who is also general manager of the Golden Centre Mall, said there had been plenty of feedback from members and the group's board.

There was a consensus it was ''pivotal to the survival of the CBD'' the hospital be rebuilt on the same site or close by.

''I think it's quite obvious the economic impact surrounding a move would obviously be significant for the CBD, hence the group's interest.''

The group had met Cr David Benson-Pope, who fought for the campaign to be taken on by the council, and Cr Conrad Stedman before the campaign's launch and received ''a heads up'' on what was being done.

Mr Eddy said Heart of Dunedin felt it was important to add its support.

Comments

Ah retailers. Making $'s. Now the government will listen!

It's inaccurate, mischievous, and fear-mongering for the DCC to be calling their campaign Save our Services. The health services are not under threat and are regional and don't in any sense 'belong' to the city. The only supporting arguments the DCC has ever given for their ill-advised political campaign are economic ones of maintaining the status quo in the central city.