Ryder is the architect. Credit: planning documents

Green light for Stockton-on-Tees health hub

Approval has been granted for the Tees Valley Diagnostics Centre, to be built on the former Castlegate shopping centre site as part of a £37m riverside regeneration programme.

The sire, to be run jointly by the North Tees & Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust and South Tees Hospitals Trust, will include facilities for MRI, CT and ultrasound scans, along with cardiology, x-ray and blood tests.

The professional team includes architect Ryder, planner Lichfields, Elliott Consultancy, Road Safety Consultants and SAJ Transport Consultants.

On submitting the plans in May, the trusts said that a building contractor has already been appointed and final designs agreed on.

The project forms part of the £37m Stockton Waterfront masterplan area, sitting at the southern end of the former Castlegate centre, which the council acquired in 2019 along with the adjacent Swallow Hotel, to trigger the regeneration programme.

Outline plans for the demolition of the shopping centre, car park and hotel and their replacement by a park and events space came forward in 2021, with a flexible application for buildings included in that application.

The urban park was approved in July. This includes the re-alignment of and bridging over the A1305, creation of a new urban park, performance space and pavilions, public realm improvements, and associated hard and soft landscaping, vehicular access, highways alterations and servicing provision.

The Stockton scheme reflects a national move to diagnostics centres that can contribute to reducing the volume of hospital visits.

In its design & access statement, Ryder said: “There is a compelling case for the proposed TVCDC given the national and local circumstances.

“From a national perspective, the Sir Mike Richards report published in 2020 concluded that a new diagnostics model is urgently needed, recommending significant reform and investment in critical diagnostic services, with Community Diagnostics Centres to play a key role in this reform.”

Future High Streets Fund support of £16.5m was secured in 2021 for the 13-7-acre site.

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