A new medical centre is proposed for this building on Gum Tree Drive, Goonellabah.
A new medical centre is proposed for this building on Gum Tree Drive, Goonellabah.

Vacant shops at G’bah set for revamp

A GROUP of four neighbourhood shops at Goonellabah are set to be transformed into a "vital" medical centre.

A development application for the building on Gum Tree Drive has been lodged with Lismore City Council by town planner Malcolm Scott, on behalf of GTFM Services.

"The small medical centre comprises two consultation rooms, a treatment room, nurse room, reception and waiting areas, staff / meeting room, storage areas and patient and staff toilets," documents lodged with the council state.

"It will be operated by two doctors and two staff.

"Works include installation of internal partitioning and fit-out, installation of a window on the northern elevation of the building, removal of a dead She oak tree and general clean-up of the land and premises."

The council has previously approved a number of different DAs for the building since it was constructed in 1977 pizza shop, BBQ chicken shop, takeaway and general store, medical consulting rooms and small laboratory, home decoration shop, laundromat and beauty salon.

The building has been vacant for more than 15 months.

"GTFM Services Pty Ltd has instructed me that medical appointments will be made prior to consultation by either telephone or in person," Mr Scott explained in his report to the council.

"Consultations are generally 15 minutes and the practice will operate to allow for one client to be with a doctor and generally two clients in the waiting room.

"COVID-19 has changed substantially the operation of medical centres including in particular making a taking medical appointments and of number of patients in waiting areas at any one time."

The medical centre would be open Monday to Friday, 8.30am until 5.30pm, and 9am until noon on Saturdays.

Doctor consultation rooms will be fully fitted with the day-to-day medical equipment, while the treatment room will contain equipment used for undertaking minor medical procedures (instrument, drug and dressing storage, autoclaves for sterilising equipment, oxygen and resuscitation, refrigerator, freezer).

"The medical centre is small in scale and nature, located in a small neighbourhood commercial zone which has not been regularly and/or frequently tenanted or utilised," Mr Scott's report states.

"The centre will provide a vital health care service in close proximity to a developed residential area."