The Civic Centre public consultation report was concluded late October 2016. The 61 page report is available on the website to download. In total from 4,000 paper copies and the online survey, 419 responses were received.
Members of the public were asked to consider 4 options within the questionnaire.
- Option 1) KTC engages with public and private sector organisations in terms of relocating to the Civic Centre – 14% favoured this option
- Option 2) KTC engages with social enterprises and not for profit organisations to manage elements of the building – 26% favoured this option
- Option 3) KTC relocates it’s offices and sells the building – 27% favoured this option
- Option 4) KTC helps facilitate and set-up social enterprises or allows private sector organisations to take on some of the other functions in the Civic Centre and trade – 16% favoured this option
- 8% Favoured none of the above
In summary the main points concluded were:
- NHS walk in centre and police contact points were popular ideas
- Re-opening of the police museum and Forensic Science Education Centre might be popular for school children and families
- A café might be successful if supported by other functions
- Using the Civic Centre as a community hub is a popular idea
- KTC is unlikely to attract many organisations to relocate here and so might not generate sufficient income
- Meeting room hire would not generate much demand
- Social enterprises and not for profit organisations managing elements of the building could be viable if it can generate sufficient income
- Allowing private sector organisations to trade divides opinions
- Relocating KTC and selling the Civic Centre should be considered as a last resort if income cannot be generated via other options
At the last meeting of the Civic Centre Strategy meeting, members considered two options for the 3 year business plan:
- Option 1 - sell the building
- Option 2 - an organisation take over the building and how KTC can better market the building (based on viable options)
The committee agreed that a business plan be initiated which, for Option 1, would include all costs/expenditure for the remainder of the loan period (47 years) and the potential savings if sold and that Option 2 business plan be based on the proviso of real potential leads and what the plan would be if these leads did not come to fruition.
Comments: Civic Centre Strategy Committee Chairman, Cllr Anayat Mohammed: "The consultation returned two very important outcomes for the council, firstly the extent of feeling held for the Civic Centre building by Keighley residents, and secondly engaging with the public over this important decision was the right thing to do. From the results of the feedback the council is doing all possible to ensure the Civic Centre has a more healthy future and serious consideration is being given to the viability of keeping the building. However, retaining the building or indeed selling, the Strategy committee working with partners will ensure it reaches a decision that will benefit the communities of Keighley".
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