Decision details

Review of the Council's Accommodation

Decision Maker: Council

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: No

Purpose:

To review the current & alternative uses of the Civic Offices, and consider the potential for relocation.

 

To consider the feasibility report on the favoured option.

 

To consider the detailed feasibility and costings report for the preferred option, including the Customer Contact Centre..

Decision:

(1)        That the principle of retaining the Civic Offices headquarters location for the Council in Epping town centre be agreed (moving towards implementation of a modified option 4 of the Price Waterhouse Coopers report) based upon:

 

            (a)        the optimisation of space within the existing footprint of the main Civic Office        building (without extension) to accommodate the majority of staff;

 

            (b)        the desire to achieve a workstation to staff ratio of no more than 7:10 through        rationalisation of the layout in the building, flexible working by staff and agile             business practices; and

 

            (c)        the phased vacation of the Condor Building, rear extension, 323 Building, link        and associated car parks within 5 years with a medium term objective of making that part of the site available for residential and/or commercial use;

 

(2)        That an early review be undertaken of the options for the future provision of the Housing Repairs Service beyond the final 3 years of the existing repairs contract;

 

(3)        That the peak operational usage requirements of the Housing Repairs and the Neighbourhoods Depots be reviewed and:

 

(a)        that these two services be relocated to the Oakwood Hill Depot with a further report on how this could be achieved; and

 

(b)        the depot office space should be used to relocate staff there at a    workstation to staff ratio of no more than 7:10;

 

(4)        That a planning application be submitted for the provision of a temporary Housing Repairs Depot at and around the Control Tower at North Weald Airfield (including the first floor meeting room), at an estimated cost of £17,500, with capital budget provision made for its construction once the timescale for the required vacation of the Epping Depot was known, in order to minimise rental costs;

 

(5)        That an assessment be undertaken to evaluate if there was a net requirement for office space for staff currently based at the Civic Offices and Hemnall Street offices that could, notwithstanding flexible and agile working practices, be accommodated in the revised layout of the Civic Offices and Oakwood Hill Depot;

 

(6)        That, if the evaluation concluded it was not possible to accommodate all staff at the Civic Offices and Hemnall Street at the reconfigured Civic Offices and Oakwood Hill Depot, a further report be considered by the Cabinet on the most appropriate way forward; and

 

(7)        That the proposed redesign of the Council’s current reception area be approved in principle to provide a centralised Customer Service Reception subject to:

 

            (a)        the later submission of a full design;

 

            (b)        a report on the capital budget provision required; and

 

            (c)        procurement of a contractor and project management for the scheme.

Report author: Bob Palmer

Publication date: 16/03/2017

Date of decision: 09/03/2017

Decided at meeting: 09/03/2017 - Cabinet

Accompanying Documents: