PEOPLE will have a chance to voice their opinion over Warwick District Council’s planned headquarters move.
The authority is moving to a new purpose built headquarters, on the current site of the Covent Garden car park in Leamington town centre, while the site of its current Riverside House headquarters on Milverton Hill will be sold to developers to build around 170 houses and flats. The plans also include a new and larger multi-storey car park.
Warwick and Leamington MP Matt Western has invited Warwick District Council chiefs to discuss the move along with residents and business owners at a meeting at Leamington Town Hall on Monday April 16, from 7.30pm to 10pm.
Mr Western has made no secret of his opposition to the move.
He said: “The council should not be spending almost £9million on a development for itself in the current climate. The people of Warwick district have been battered by austerity in recent years and local services have been significantly reduced.”
Mr Western is also angry there is no provision for affordable homes within the Riverside House development proposals – despite the council’s own guidelines which say 40 per cent of new developments should be affordable properties.
The MP launched a petition against the plans earlier this year which has gained more than 3,000 signatures.
He added: “A huge number of residents have expressed their concern as have many businesses which are deeply concerned by the loss of car parking provision at Covent Garden.”
Council chiefs say the move from Riverside House to the town centre will save over £300,000 a year in running costs, will be more accessible to residents, and will also boost the town centre economy.
The sale of Riverside House will fund the new HQ with the council funding the cost of the new £9.75million car park.