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Cost of new community hub rises by another £1.5m due to design changes

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The cost of constructing a new community hub in Lynn has risen by around £1.5million because of changes to its design.Norfolk County Council’s cabinet has approved proposals to uplift the projected costs of the project, which will see a Multi-User Community Hub set up in the former Argos building on New Conduit Street.When open in 2025, this will see library services transferred over from the Carnegie building on London Road – while it is also planned to house other services.

Ongoing construction work at the Multi-Use Community Hub on New Conduit Street in Lynn

The price to complete the project has now risen to around £14.2million.A county council spokesperson told the Lynn News the latest £1.54million of additional costs were announced following a public consultation on the plans earlier this year.An updated design was produced based on feedback provided, with residents saying they wanted high quality learning facilities in a “landmark building that will reflect the rich history of the area and meet modern environmental standards”.

Ongoing construction work at the Multi-Use Community Hub on New Conduit Street in Lynn

Ahead of a meeting on Monday, a report to the county council’s cabinet said: “The project has also sought to look to minimise energy consumption and use technologies to reduce the carbon impact of this building, particularly looking at heating, ventilation and lighting across the site. “This has resulted in an uplift in the projected costs for the project.”The cabinet was therefore asked to approve an additional £1.54million funding from existing corporate property budgets, and did so during the meeting. As well as the library, the hub is expected to contain meeting places for groups and community organisations, workspaces, and adult learning facilities.

Ongoing construction work at the Multi-Use Community Hub on New Conduit Street in Lynn

Concerns have been raised that moving the library from the Carnegie building could lead to it becoming derelict if a new use is not found.Last year, the county council and West Norfolk Council were looking to kick-start a process to allow community groups to apply to take on the historic building.

Ongoing construction work at the Multi-Use Community Hub on New Conduit Street in Lynn

It was hoped a suitor could be found by some stage during this year. The county council spokesperson confirmed this is still the case, but there have been some delays with the process due to local elections and this week’s general election.“We still full intend to open up expressions of interest from community groups and others to apply to take on the Carnegie in due course,” the spokesperson said.



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