Adding Value to Healthcare.
Location: Cinderford, Gloucestershire
Client: Speller Metcalfe on behalf of Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust
Services: Transport planning and highway design
Rappor provided transport planning and highway design services for the development of a new hospital at Cinderford which incorporates an urgent care unit, 24 bed en-suite inpatient unit, physiotherapy services, pediatrics services, an imaging department, general and specialist outpatient department, a dental suite, treatment suite and a small retail unit. The new 4,327m2 hospital replaces two existing hospitals, located at the Dilke Memorial and the Lydney and District Hospital, due to them being unfit for future healthcare needs.
The hospital project had stalled for multiple reasons including difficulties surrounding a safe and suitable access to a very constrained site with a restricted highway network. Through pre-application discussions we worked in partnership with the design team, the Forest of Dean District Council, and the Gloucestershire County Council (GCC), presenting and running through a number of access options supported by Road Safety Audits to agree on a safe and suitable access. In order to achieve our goals, it was necessary to design off-site mitigation. This was in the form of a traffic calming scheme and enhancing the existing walking and cycling infrastructure. This helped to encourage sustainable forms of all travel to and from the new hospital. These discussions also concentrated on agreeing the scope of a BREEAM compliant Transport Assessment and Travel Plan, including a Walking, Cycling and Horse-riding Audit to support the proposed hospital.
We faced challenges with complexities of the site including a constrained local highway network, mineshafts, and ecological constraints. We had to review a number of access options including a priority junction and traffic signals and were successful in achieving the most cost-effective design solution which included negotiating departures from national standards with the GCC supported by a robust evidence base. The highway works options were not costed and we agreed a priority junction and traffic calming solution rather than a signalised option which would have cost our clients significantly more.
Rappor were able to unlock the stalled development and were successful in designing and agreeing a safe and suitable access with GCC that enabled the proposed development. The planning application was submitted in October 2021 and approved a few months later in March 2022 due to the extensive pre-application discussions and Rappor’s partnership with the design team, the Forest of Dean District Council, and Gloucestershire County Council which helped to reduce the number of issues raised during the determination period.
We are extremely proud of our role in the project which has enabled the unlocking of a constrained site that will provide much needed health care facilities for the Forest of Dean.