Letters to the Port Stephens Examiner: July 25

Why knock it down

Cr Nell's comments, (Examiner , June 20) combined with other councillors' Notice of Motion, [at the June 25 council meeting] to demolish the Donald Street East concrete car park with a cost starting at $1.4 million, just goes to prove in my opinion how they seemingly would have put ratepayers' money to waste with the Special Rate Variation.

Having spoken to the architect about this car park, it was designed with strength in mind with the steel girders within and capped at the top, ready with more steel and concrete extensions in mind.

During the 1990s the expansion gaps were sealed to prevent concrete cancer.

Recent engineers' reports claim that it is supposedly unsafe and cannot take the weight of vehicles.

I disagree.

TEAR IT DOWN: East ward councillor John Nell says Port Stephens Council should fund the demolition of the Donald Street East carpark.

TEAR IT DOWN: East ward councillor John Nell says Port Stephens Council should fund the demolition of the Donald Street East carpark.

To demolish this structure is exactly what some councillors want which is eight storeys minimum - now nine storeys with the recent precedent set at the last council meeting - plus two to three storeys under, plus 10 per cent variation = 13 stories.

It is exactly what our council wanted a decade ago.

Brian Watson-Will, Corlette

Call for a business case

The optimism of Peter Clough (Letters, Examiner, June 18) might have been premature when so many high rise residential buildings have been found unsafe in Sydney, Melbourne and goodness knows where else.

At the same time Robert Mulas (Letters, Examiner, June 18) was entirely correct in calling for government intervention of the building industry to restore safety and performance standards, and more importantly consumer confidence.

The scenes of abandoned buildings and homeless owners on TV day and night, sound loudly the alarm "buyers beware!" for any new high rise units.

Even if the developer has resources to start building work and put up another tower crane in Nelson Bay, it will take time for buyer confidence to return.

It is correct that the Hunter Regional Plan (HRP) has identified Nelson Bay as a centre for tourism, and an hotel at the CBD would possibly be more suitable.

The HRP also calls for an optimal population and housing density for Nelson Bay.

Tourism infrastructure will need to be in place.

A business case should be established for such a venture.

In other words, a clear vision for Nelson Bay is needed.

Ernest To, Medowie

System is broken

I am a retired GP and my wife is a retired nurse.

Recently she had a health problem of which I was concerned about and we attended the emergency department of Tomaree Community Hospital.

The triage nurse attended to my wife fairly quickly, performing an ECG, which I believe was normal procedure.

We were then told to sit in the waiting area to wait to see the doctor on call.

We waited for two hours.

An elderly couple sitting behind us had been waiting three and a half hours, I believe.

I cannot blame the nurse or the doctor for this long wait, I blame the system which needs to change.

Once a decision is made that a patient's condition is not urgent, they should be referred back to their regular doctor for follow up.

We cannot expect elderly people to sit in a waiting room for hours. It is wrong.

To this end we left and I took my wife to our Shoal Bay medical centre where she was seen by a doctor urgently.

We are very grateful to all staff for looking after her so promptly.

Dr Michael Eletr, Fingal Bay