County Hall could be turned into 350 flats – plus restaurants
Nottinghamshire County Council has voted to move its civic and democratic base to a new building near Hucknall – in a move which could pave the way for 350 apartments at its West Bridgford County Hall base.
The decision comes off the back of a review which has found that it is no longer practical to keep the building, which opened in 1946, as the Council’s main base in the long-term, as it will be too expensive to maintain and improve to meet the Council’s environmental ambitions.
The West Bridgford location requires essential maintenance costing more than £30m over the next 12 years, with up to a further £28m needed to bring the building up to modern environmental standards. The Council, however, says it will keep an office in the affluent suburb.
Initial estimates show that County Hall in West Bridgford could be transformed into 350 flats, alongside commercial space such as restaurants.
The Council’s new low carbon, all-electric office near Hucknall, which has already had full planning permission, will be the new home of the council’s civic, democratic and leadership functions after being approved at Thursday’s Full Council meeting ( 13 July)
Construction will start later this year and should be completed by winter 2024/25. The building is also earmarked to be the new home of two key council front line services, the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) for vulnerable children and adults, and the council’s customer service centre, which handles all public enquiries.
Nottinghamshire County Council leader, councillor Ben Bradley MP, said: “County Hall is an old building which is too expensive to operate and maintain and would cost tens of millions of taxpayers’ money to make it viable for the future, which we of course can’t justify. We want to spend that money on public services, not on running office buildings.
“We are looking to the future. This move will help ensure that we have sustainable finances, and also mean that the decision-making function of this Council is based in the very heart of our county. That will help to bring jobs, skills and investment into the Hucknall area.
“It’s still too early to comment on the future of County Hall, but we will be speaking to our staff and partners about all the options for the future. Being an iconic Nottinghamshire landmark with a riverside location along the Trent, makes it a very attractive site. But whatever happens, its heritage will be respected.”