Council heads to new community hub – Mansfield District Council

Mansfield District Council has started work on establishing a community hub in the city center.

The project – Mansfield Connect – would be an ambitious, multi-tenant new facility housing a variety of public services as well as spaces for private sector occupants, such as food and beverage outlets.

The project, which is led by the city council, will be a central part of its bid for the second round of the government’s Upgrade Fund (LUF).

The Department for Work and Pensions, Nottinghamshire County Council, West Nottinghamshire College, Nottingham Trent University, Health Partners and the CVS Volunteer Coordinator have been invited to participate in the center.

The project would see the council move from the Civic Center to a downtown site and the Civic Center would be redeveloped.

In addition to improving the delivery of public services by providing a range of accessible branches in a central area, it is envisioned that the new center will generate additional footfall in the city center, which would benefit existing retailers and contribute to the regeneration by strengthening investor confidence.

The program would also align with the goals of the council’s new downtown master plan and the council’s broader strategies with respect to its growth goals, as well as aspirations, well-being priorities. and place.

Cllr Stuart Richardson, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Growth, said: “Moving city council to the city center and partnering with other authorities and public sector bodies makes perfect sense for a number of reasons.

“Bundling the services will make them more common, more accessible and will work better for the public. And that will allow our customers to kill two birds with one stone, as well as conduct any business they may have in the Hub, being in the city center means they can stay awhile as well, and maybe visit the bank, or go shopping, or meet friends for lunch, for example. This increase in downtown traffic would be a win-win at all levels. “

A recent report on the program to the Mansfield Place Board detailed the objectives of the LUF, which focuses on capital investments in local infrastructure and investments in regeneration and growth in places of low productivity and connectivity. Auctions can go up to £ 20million.

The first round of tenders to the Fund ended in June and the board chose not to participate in this round of tenders due to its tight deadlines and other ongoing work on offers to the Cities Fund and the Government’s Community Renewal Fund.

Instead, he plans to submit a proposal for the second round of funding bids to the LUF. Further information has been requested by the council from the government on the deadlines for the next round and it is awaiting clarifications.

Tenders should focus on how they improve transport, cultural investments and the regeneration of the city center, such as the modernization of dilapidated buildings and infrastructure, and the reallocation of brownfields.

They must demonstrate how the investment could be used to reduce crime and bring safe public services and community spaces to city centers.

The LUF is designed to target places with the greatest needs and Mansfield has been rated a level one in three, which places it among the areas with the greatest need.

As such, he qualified for funding of £ 125,000 to help him draft his bid to improve his chances of success in the bidding process. Among the aspects that an offer to the LUF must demonstrate, there is value for money and the ability to deliver its projects within a specific timeframe.

The board retained the services of ARC Partnership project management specialists to support the development of project feasibility, costs and design options.

They will work closely with consultants Allies & Morrison who are working with the council on the new downtown master plan.

In the meantime, the board has set up a steering group to guide the development of Mansfield Connect and secure the commitment of partners for their operational needs within the new hub. This information will be used to help build the file for the LUF offer.

Nottinghamshire County Council has expressed support for the idea of ​​a new civic center in Mansfield, with the plan in line with the County Council’s broader goal of reducing its carbon footprint. With more staff working from home and in hybrid mode, it is reducing its offices from 17 to nine.

The Chairman of its Economic Development and Asset Management Committee, Cllr Keith Girling, said: “We are reviewing potential plans to move some municipal services from Mansfield to a potential utility center, planned by Mansfield District Council. as he plans to move to the city. center.

“This is the start, but this approach makes sense as we look to share resources and make the council building more multifunctional and include things like conference rooms and, potentially, libraries.”

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