Decision - Patcham Place
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Decision Maker: Cabinet
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: Yes
To seek Cabinet approval to market and sell
(1) That Cabinet authorise the marketing of Patcham Place including the stable building by appointing agents for disposal by way of a long leasehold interest.
(2) That Cabinet will consider a subsequent Cabinet report summarising the results of the marketing exercise and bids received and providing recommendations for disposal. The net capital receipt shall be used to support the council’s corporate accommodation strategy, value for money and capital programme.
Reasons for the decision:
The property has not been in use since the YHA vacated in 2007 and following a lengthy dilapidations settlement with the YHA whilst its use as an operational building was explored both internally and with potential partners it was not thought to be suitable for occupation by any of the council’s services because of its age, configuration, listed status, costs of refurbishment and costs of maintenance. It has now been identified as a surplus asset.
In compliance with the council’s Corporate Property Strategy & Asset Management Plan it is proposed to dispose of this surplus asset to achieve a capital receipt.
Alternative options considered:
To retain the building as empty would diverge from the council’s priorities and property objectives set out in the council’s Corporate Property Strategy and Asset Management Plan. It would also continue to place upon the council a financial responsibility to maintain, repair, secure and manage the site.
To refurbish the building as offices and occupy as an operational property would require substantial financial investment by the council. Given the property’s age and configuration it is not best suited to this use for the council. The building would not lend itself to flexible use of space in the long term should the council’s requirements change. Its ongoing maintenance would also put a budget pressure on the council. To date an appropriate service provision has not identified that would best make use of this space.
For the council to act as developer and refurbish and sell the properties the council would be required to provide a substantial level of finance and resources to design the refurbishment, obtain the appropriate statutory consents and complete the works. In addition it would also be required to take on an unacceptable level of risk associated with the refurbishment, the costs incurred and the ability to meet the demands of the market at a volatile and unpredictable point in the economic cycle. The council does not have the appropriate resources or experience in house to act competently on a development of this nature and the risks associated are therefore increased exponentially to outweigh any potential financial benefit, if obtainable from the development.
Report author: Angela Dymott, Jessica Hamilton
Publication date: 09/06/2011
Date of decision: 09/06/2011
Decided at meeting: 09/06/2011 - Cabinet
Effective from: 17/06/2011