COUNCILLORS have given their backing to innovative plans for a new centre of independent living for adults with disabilities.
Hartlepool Borough Council is looking to redevelop land next to the Havelock Centre for Independent Living, in Burbank Street, into a new centre and re-developing the current site into 20 to 25 units of accommodation.
There are also plans to build on a second site in Burbank Street which could be used to provide a further 20-30 units of accommodation for adults with complex health and social care needs.
Members of the adult services committee endorsed the plans and officers will now do further work on how the project could be funded.
Labour councillor Ged Hall said: “I really welcome this development.
“There is a great need for this.”
Jill Harrison, the council’s assistant director of adult social care, said: “We need to do that detailed work on the finances.”
Stephen Thomas, from HealthWatch Hartlepool which aims to help improve health and social care services, added: “Hartlepool is short of accommodation of this nature.”
But Mr Thomas did raise concerns about the poor public transport links in Burbank and people’s access to doctors and pharmacies.
Mrs Harrison added: “We absolutely do not want to make any changes unless the end product is better than what we have in place now.”
Labour councillor Paul Beck questioned whether the facility would be open to disabled soldiers and officers confirmed nobody would be ruled out.