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Notwithstanding the loud complaints of dulnoss of trade, and the number of carpenteis out of employment, wo are still able to chronicle the fact that building operations have not entirely ceased ; and that the class of edifices at present in course of construction are a decided improvement upon the efforts of architects in the past. We are proud to record that in the construction of them a considerable portion of the material used is of local manufacture, Messrs Montgomery and Co. ’s brick manufactory being capable of supplying the wants in their line at a price which can defy competition with outsiders, and the quality is also superior to tho brick previously brought from Christchurch.

By far the most important building now under construction is the County Hospital. Situated in an elevated position at the west end of the Domain, with the spacious grounds in front of it, and the township in the foreground, it would he hardly possible to imagine a more suitable site, and one on which patients, from the natural healthiness and beauty of tho place, may recover from any complaints in which salubrity is considered an aid to convalescence. The buildings now being erected are from designs prepared by J. Stanley Bruce, Esq., but the whole of the structure planned by the architect is not included in the present contract, as one of the wards is left out for the present. It was resolved by the County Council in February last to erect an hospital, and Mr Bruce was requested to submit plans for a building to suit the purpose. At the Council’s meeting in March last the architect was able to show what sort of a structure he proposed to erect, and the suitability of it at once decided the Council to adopt it, leaving out a portion for the present, which can at any time be added without detriment to the structure. The building presents a very compact and elegant appearance. That portion which is at present the north end of it, but will eventually be the centre, is two storeys high, and has communication with the wards by spacious passages. The entrance is very handsome, the brick work being tastefully relieved with Oamaru stone, cut to tasteful designs. The entrance is recessed, and wiU form a pleasant lounge for convalescents, out-doorpatients, or visitors. On entering the main building, the visit or first enters a spacious lobby, which is flanked on one side by the dispensary and on the other by the consulting room. At the end of the lobby is the entrance tothe warders’ room and the kitchen, and these officers will find that every convenience possible has been provided for them. Ihe ward is separated from the main building by a corridor fifty feet long and eight feet wide, and contains rooms for six patients, who will not have to complain of ventilation, as provision is made for a supply of 1584 cubic feet for each invalid. Independent of these rooms, there are rooms for a nurse, a linen room—which can also be utilised for preparing an occasional snack for a patient with a delicate appetite—a lavatory and a bath room, capable of being utilised for either cold or hot baths ; and the other rooms and requisites necessary for an hospital. Provision is also made for those who pre fer'the advantages to be gained by having medical attendance at such an establishment, to living and being treated at their own residences ; and this is one of the means by which the hospital will become to a certain extent self-supporting. Six extra rooms are provided, which are to be used for those who are able and willing to pay for the luxury of skilled attendance, and this part of the establishment will no doubt be largely patronised by those unfortunate enough to become patients. A fever ward is also provided, and a padded room some distance away from the main building for lunatics. The morgue and operating room are also detached, so that the ordinary patients will be out of hearing of noise caused by operations in those rooms. A large laundry, with all the necessary arrangements, for this portion of the ward is also placed in a convenient part of the building ; and altogether the hospital is a model of compactness, and convenience. The external appearance is imposing, but at present looks slightly one sided, as the design included the erection of the north wing. The style of architecture is Elizabethan, the outlines and proportions imposing and bold, and the general appearance either from a close inspection or a distant view pleasing to the eye. We must congratulate the architect on the success he has achieved, and the contractor, ,Mr Carleton, who, although a Dunedin tradesman, has found it to his advantage to use Aahbunon made bricks in the construction, and expressed a very flattering opinion as to their quality.

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Bibliographic details

NEW BUILDINGS IN THE DISTRICT., Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 16, 1 November 1879

Word Count

NEW BUILDINGS IN THE DISTRICT. Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 16, 1 November 1879

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