Common Good: Municipal Buildings

Closed 27 Aug 2021

Opened 1 Jul 2021

Overview

Falkirk Council's headquarters, Municipal Buildings, and Falkirk Town Hall were originally acquired by Falkirk Town Council in 1946.

Due to age, the buildings are reaching the end of their economic life, are no longer fit for purpose and are costly to refurbish.

At a meeting of Falkirk Council on 30 September 2020 the decision was taken to close Municipal Buildings, and to build a new headquarters and arts facility in Falkirk town centre and decommission the Municipal buildings.

On 23 June 2021 the Council decided either to build the entire new facility on a site at Cockburn Street/High Street Falkirk or to split it with the arts facility part at the Cockburn Street/High Street site and the headquarters element on part of the existing Municipal Buildings site. The final decision will be made at a later date.

Proposal

It is proposed that the larger part of the Municipal Buildings (coloured blue on the plan) be demolished during 2021/22 and be reprofiled and temporarily grassed.

Image of the Municipal Buildings, Town Hall and surrounding area. The main area is highlighted is red while half the Municipal Buildings to the East has been highlihgted blue.

This would mitigate safety concerns, ensure there is no adverse visual impact on the town centre, and would avoid substantial holding costs including rates, insurance, and security.

The remaining part of Municipal Buildings and Falkirk Town Hall would stay in use until any new replacement facility is operational (estimated to be around 2024/25).

If it is decided to build the new HQ and arts facility wholly on the Cockburn Street/High Street site, the entire site, when vacant, would be sold for development either with or without prior demolition of the remaining part of the buildings.

If it is decided to build the new HQ on part of the existing Municipal Buildings site, the balance of the Municipal Buildings site and Falkirk Town Hall, when vacant, would be sold for development either with or without prior demolition of the remaining part of the Buildings.

The costs for decanting, asbestos removal, and demolition are likely to be c£1m. These costs have already been included within the business plan for the HQ & Arts facility project.

The demolition, clearance and sale proceeds from the existing site could contribute to the replacement facilities.

Why are we consulting?

The buildings and the site (coloured pink and blue on the plan) form part of the common good of the former Burgh of Falkirk.

When considering disposal of common good land (including demolition or sale), certain legal requirements must be followed. These are:

If necessary, court approval will be sought if, following this consultation, it is decided to proceed to demolish Municipal Buildings and to sell all or any part of the consultation site when vacant.

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