THE organisation behind a planned seniors’ village says there are “no amber lights here as far as we’re concerned” and it aims to open the facility by 2021 at the latest.
RSL LifeCare deputy chief executive officer Illana Halliday made the comments after the Northern Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) approved the $42.6 million development last week.
She said LifeCare’s development team would “now start looking at the tweaking – whatever it takes to get things through” and then put the works out to tender.
“Given that we’ve had to go through some hurdles, [the opening is] now looking like 2020, but that may slide over into ’21,” Mrs Halliday said.
“We have 44 different sites across NSW, so we’re quite experienced in that tweaking, and providing a facility and a home that people can be comfortable in and proud of.”
It’s not known yet what those tweaks might be.
JRPP chairman Garry West said the panel had approved the development application as is, but Tamworth Regional Council might require some amendments before issuing a construction certificate.
The village is slated for Moore Creek Road.
Mrs Halliday said LifeCare had chosen Tamworth for two main reasons: it was a major regional centre; and it had “a significant war veteran and war widow population”.
“We believe it’s very important that people who are war veterans or war widows, and have some affinity with our goals of supporting people who have supported us through their service, should have the opportunity to live somewhere that respects and honours that on a daily basis,” she said.
She said this would even inform the interior design, with plans for a memorial wall and displays of war memorabilia.
The development will include 57 self-contained units and a 62-room, two-storey residential care facility.
It will have a community centre, off-street car parking and communal spaces.
A roundabout that will help address accidents at the intersection with Browns Lane will be installed thanks to a recent announcement of Black Spot funding.
Mrs Halliday said there would be three parts to the business: residential aged care, also known as nursing home care; retirement living; and a LifeCare at Home service.
“In the first instance, [the latter will be] available to those people living in our retirement villages, but then once we have more staff on board, it will be available to people in their own homes in the community,” she said.