Guymer Bailey Architects and Aecom Engineering have been appointed to design the Thomas Embling Hospital expansion in Fairfield.
The $349.6 million upgrade will see a further 82 beds added to the forensic mental health facility, across a new 34-bed womens precinct and a 48-bed medium security mens facility.
The women’s facility will be a specially designed therapeutic space for women who have experienced extensive trauma and family violence.
Funding for the project was allocated by the Minister for Mental Health James Merlino at the State Budget in May.
The detailed designs for the hospital will take into account recommendations of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.
Plans for the expansion also include new clinical administration facilities and additional car parking.
The hospital upgrade will reduce wait times for specialist mental health services for patients in the justice system or at high risk of offending, and will improve access to forensic mental health services in a secure, rehabilitation focused environment.
Guymer Bailey Architects have designed a number of projects for the Victorian Government, including the Shepparton Law Courts, the Western Autistic School in Niddrie and Charles Latrobe College in Heidelberg West. Thomas Embling will be its first government health project in Victoria.
Minister Merlino said the project will vastly improve Victoria’s forensic mental healthcare system.
“This landmark project will change the way forensic mental health services are delivered in Victoria – with more in-demand capacity to make sure Victorian forensic patients get the treatment they need immediately,” he said.
”In response to the recommendations of the Royal Commission, we’re ensuring that Victorians most at risk can access mental health services in a secure and recovery-focused environment.”
The tender process for builders will open later this year, with construction to follow in mid-2022, and an expected completion date in 2024. The project is expected to create around 550 construction jobs.
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Image source: VHBA.
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