Council HQ on the move?

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Council HQ on the move?

Peterborough City Council`s  cabinet will  consider a proposal to relocate staff to new office premises on Fletton Quays at a meeting today.

If agreed the council would become an anchor tenant on this key city centre site in 2018; helping to kick-start the wider £120million redevelopment that is set to include a hotel and 280 homes as well as securing the future of the listed railway sheds.

The proposal is set to generate the council additional income of £7.6million over the coming years which will help to protect services.

The city council would lease both Bayard Place and the non-civic areas of the Town Hall for commercial use. The civic areas of the Town Hall, including the Council Chamber, would be retained and used as present.

Councillor David Seaton, cabinet member for resources at the council, said: “The council has shown its commitment to the regeneration of Fletton Quays as a key city centre site. By becoming the first tenant it will kick-start the wider redevelopment planned.

 However we have always insisted that it must be financially beneficial to the council in order to protect council taxpayers from extra cost. The business case shows that not only will this move benefit the city and residents but will also generate income to protect services.

The council first stated in 2014 its intention to occupy new office premises on Fletton Quays, provided that the overall proposal would be financially beneficial to the city and the council.

A business case to be presented to cabinet states that the move will generate additional income over the next 27 years and confirms that the relocation will not come at the expense of taxpayers.

This additional income will include the council’s share of proceeds from the sale of the Fletton Quays site to developers, as a joint partner of the Peterborough Investment Partnership.

The financial benefits to the council also include rental income from leasing Town Hall and Bayard Place and no longer renting Manor Drive. Through the redevelopment of Fletton Quays income will also be generated from additional business rates.

This is set to outweigh costs of the project, which include leasing the new office and capital borrowing needed to fit out the new offices.

Councillor Seaton added:  The council s current accommodation no longer reflects how the council has changed over the last decade. In Peterborough we have seen huge reductions in funding, major changes in the way services are delivered and a decrease in the number of staff we employ.

 Moving forward the council is modernising the way we deliver services and the way staff work. These new facilities will allow staff to work more flexibly and efficiently to the benefit of residents. Councillors have indicated they wish to retain the historic civic areas and we have listened to that.

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