Plans have been unveiled to turn Peterborough’s Bayard Place into temporary accommodation for the homeless.
The city council’s proposals would see it keep its Customer Contact Centre on the ground floor of the site in Broadway but convert the rest of the building into 70 flats.
The authority says it would save approximately £800,000 a year by no longer needing to use more expensive temporary accommodation, but it would lose out on an annual income of £540,000 as it had previously budgeted to rent the site out.
Plans to use the building as interim teaching accommodation for the new University of Peterborough have “not progressed,” the council admitted.
Moreover, the council has now agreed to spend an additional £2.6 million of capital funding (money used for infrastructure projects) which will largely be spent on ensuring council office buildings, including its new offices at Fletton Quays (Sand Martin House), have improved ICT infrastructure.
The council said this will allow it to promote “agile working” and will allow it to make money by letting out parts of Sand Martin House.
The authority also said it has received more than £8 million of additional income from the Fletton Quays development than previously envisaged.
This includes grant funding to convert Whitworth Mill into a creative and digital arts centre which arts group Metal will move into.
This will now allow the council to sell off Metal’s current base of Chauffeur’s Cottage at the back of the Town Hall, generating more income.
The £120 million Fletton Quays development will also see an additional 78 apartments than the 280 first envisaged, while construction will begin shortly on the new four star, 160 bedroom Hilton Garden Inn Hotel,
Other attractions include a whisky and gin distillery and ‘urban beach’ (which has generated huge interest) more than 500 parking spaces and places to leave bicycles at every part of the site.
Cabinet member for resources Cllr David Seaton hailed the “incredible progress” which has been made on the site at Monday’s cabinet meeting, with the council set to move its staff to the site in July 2018.
In a further development, a new potential public sector tenant is in advanced talks with the council to move into the north wing of the Town Hall.
The Department for Work and Pensions is set to move into the south wing midway through this year.