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Making a future for the old Queenstown Hospital.

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Guy Barnett Liberal Senator for Tasmania

Making A Future For The Old Queenstown Hospital Friday, 23 September 2005

Senator Barnett today has encouraged tourism operators, the State Government and the West Coast Council to utilise the tourism potential of the old Queenstown Hospital.

“This is a wonderful old historic building, built in1938 and set in splendid garden surrounds, with a great history, solidly built and with parts of the complex such as the federally funded aged care wing that was only built in 1994,” Senator Barnett said.

“There are some great examples of old buildings such as the historic Hydro lodge in the Blue Mountains of NSW that has become an internationally famous hotel and tourist attraction. This gives the old hospital at Queenstown enormous potential with the right backing from local authorities,” he said.

Senator Barnett said he was heartened to hear that West Coast Mayor Darryl Gerrity had also lobbied the State Government about possible uses for the hospital, which is owned by the State.

I am also attracted to the Mayor’s idea to have the site become an annex for the University of Tasmania’s new Centre for Excellence for Mining.

“The worst case scenario is for this wonderful old building to be either bulldozed or left to the plight of vandalism, decay and ruin behind a temporary cyclone fence. It would be a terrible shame to squander such a fabulous location in Queenstown,” Senator Barnett said.

“I urge the State Government to appoint a West Coast based committee with a brief to ensure that this site is disposed of in a way that protects its heritage and benefits the West Coast,” he said.