Councillor Mrs N Bramhall, Executive Member for Property presented the report setting out redevelopment proposals for a Council-owned property in Cromwell Road.
The report set out relevant statutory powers, background and key information, development proposals and all relevant implications.
The property comprised lock-up shops with flats above. It was predominantly vacant and considered to be unfit for purpose for modern retail and residential requirements.
In November 2015 Executive authority was given to progress a refurbishment and extension of the property but since that time a redevelopment of the adjacent Queensgate building had been completed.
In view of the success of the redevelopment of Queensgate, further feasibility work was carried out which concluded that a new build development should be delivered on the site, rather than the previously proposed refurbishment and extension.
The new built development would allow complete flexibility to design the building to meet current market requirements, without the constraint of the existing structure. It would also complete the regeneration of this side of the town centre.
The proposed development would provide a ground floor retail unit as well as 32 residential units above, an increase of 24 units from the existing building, which would help to meet growing residential demand.
It would also optimise use of the Council’s property asset to generate increased revenue whilst delivering a significant capital receipt.
Note: Councillor M.A. Brunt, Executive Member for LGA and Member Development (and Chairman of the Planning Committee) left the room for the consideration of this report.
RECOMMENDED that the Head of Finance be authorised, in consultation with the Head of Property and Executive Members for Property and Planning Policy and Finance, to make the necessary arrangements to finance the project subject to key stage sign off as set out in this report and to include the costs of the project within the Capital Programme as detailed in the Exempt part of the Executive’s agenda.
(i) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the
• Head of Finance
• Executive Member for Property; and
• Executive Member for Planning Policy and Finance
to make the necessary consultancy and contractor appointments to progress and submit a Planning Application for the development of 16-46 Cromwell Road, Redhill, in accordance with the budget envelope set out in the exempt report in Part 2 of the Executive’s agenda;
(ii) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the Executive Member for Property to market the development of 16-46 Cromwell Road, Redhill and negotiate, agree and enter into Agreement for Leases and Leases with commercial, public or other organisations subject to the key stage sign off set out in the report to the Executive;
(iii) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the Executive Member for Property to make arrangements to terminate existing leases within 16-46 Cromwell Road, Redhill, under existing Landlord and Tenant Law to facilitate the redevelopment of this site;
(iv) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the Executive Member for Property to appoint the necessary Consultants and construction Contractors for the redevelopment of 16-46 Cromwell Road, Redhill, to prepare the necessary documentation and to obtain competitive construction tenders, subject to key stage sign off set out in the report to the Executive;
(v) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the Executive Members for Property and Planning Policy and Finance to finalise, agree and sign construction contracts subject to key stage sign off set out in the report to the Executive;
(vi) the Head of Property be authorised, in consultation with the Executive Member for Property to market and sell long leasehold interests on the residential flats subject to key stage sign off set out in the report to the Executive; and
(vii) the above decisions replace those agreed by the Executive in November 2015 to take account of the changed circumstances.
Reasons for decision: The property was predominantly vacant and produced minimal income for the Council in its existing form.
The recommended option completed redevelopment of this part of the town centre and represented a commercially acceptable return on capital employed, increasing income generation whilst also increasing the asset value once construction work was complete.
Alternative options: To refurbish the property, to dispose of the property, or to do nothing.