Officials at Grand River Hospital say they’re not concerned about patients being negatively affected by changes brought on by light rail transit.

The LRT line will run along King Street right in front of the hospital, taking out the two centre lanes of traffic.

“We realize that there is going to be a fairly significant impact in terms of access right in front of the hospital,” says hospital spokesperson Mark Karjaluoto.

Karjaluoto says the hospital is working out a plan with the Region of Waterloo to maintain access to the hospital during and after construction.

“There will need to continue to be full accesses to ambulances on the site, but King Street isn’t necessarily the only access point,” he says.

“There are other ways to be able to get into the ambulance garage.”

Mount Hope Street is one potential access point for ambulances.

Regional officials say access to the hospital will be maintained during construction, and once LRT tracks are in the ground, ambulances will be able to avoid traffic jams by driving on the platforms.

“It’s going to be paved. They can mount that curb and basically run along the tracks,” says Thomas Schmidt, the region’s commissioner of transportation and environmental services.

LRT construction is expected to begin in summer 2014, with trains up and running by 2017.