A project conceived more than 20 years ago will become a reality in mid 2015 when Ballyshannon opens a new state-of-the art primary care centre.
This lunchtime John Hayes, area manager of the HSE in Donegal told guests at the contract signing with Boyle Contractors, Letterkenny that the development was “a great day for Ballyshannon”. Hayes said “the project has had a long gestation period and has had a few challenges along the way, more recently financial ones, but patience and persistence paid off.”
The plan sees the old convent which dates back to 1883 and the boarding school buildings which date to the 1960s turned into a Primary Care Centre and administrative offices.
“It will consolidate a huge range of services on one site and will be co-located beside the Shiel Hospital which offers a ‘lovely synergy’,” said Mr Hayes. There would be “cost efficiencies” but the real benefit will be the “integration of services”.
Niall Taylor, architect, outlined the building plans with HSE accommodation to be housed in the former convent building while the Primary Care Centre will be in what was the old boarding school.
A glass connecting corridor will link the two buildings.
Dr Eamonn Stack, on behalf of the Bayview Medical Practice, said he was delighted that they were now on the final leg of a journey that has taken more than 20 years, adding that the Centre would help to enhance medical services offered in the area.
Michael McLoone, chair of Backing Ballyshannon, said the development was a very positive step for the town while Mayor Cllr John Meehan welcomed the project as very welcome and would give Ballyshannon a major boost.