Plans for new Merseyside
Police Headquarters unveiled
MERSEYSIDE'S Police Commissioner has
agreed in principle to build a new Police Headquarters on a key gateway into
Following a year long evaluation of all the options, Jane Kennedy's preferred
choice for the future of Merseyside Police Headquarters is to develop a new
purpose built Headquarters on a site on Scotland Road in Everton ward.
Even by conservative estimates, building a new Headquarters will be £780,000
cheaper than refurbishing the existing Police Headquarters in Canning Place. A
more efficient and environmentally friendly new build Headquarters will also be
£380,000 a year cheaper to run and maintain, helping the organisation to save
£15.5m compared to the cost of keeping Canning Place over the next 40 years.
The new Headquarters will consist of a 4 storey building with a single storey
annex, housing nearly 850 Officers, PCSOs, and staff in largely open plan
Offices, as well as providing meeting rooms, a lecture theatre and break out
spaces. It will be located on a predominantly brownfield site, largely owned by
Liverpool City Council and bound by Scotland Road, St Anne Street and the
approach road to the Queensway Tunnel. It is also adjacent to the Force's
existing St Anne Street site.
The announcement comes after a detailed and extensive study to identify the most
cost effective and efficient solution to address the existing issues around
Merseyside Police's current Headquarters in Canning Place, which was built in
1977 and is in urgent need of essential repairs and maintenance work.
As part of this process, the Commissioner asked each of Merseyside's five local
authorities to identify any potential sites for the development of a new Police
Headquarters. The 13 sites where put forward by the Councils were assessed and scored
alongside an additional 31 privately owned sites identified by the Force and
their external consultants. The top 5 of these sites were then evaluated in
more detail, with the Scotland Road site being identified as the best possible
alternative to Canning Place.
A further independent feasibility study was then carried out to compare the
costs and benefits of carrying out a major refurbishment of Canning Place
against developing a purpose built site on Scotland Road. It has always been
understand that maintaining the status quo was not an option.
Jane said:- "It has been a complex and thorough process to get to the
position where I can make this decision. Extensive evaluations have been
undertaken which confirm that building a new Headquarters on Scotland Road is
the most effective, efficient and economical way to ensure that Merseyside
Police is able to tackle crime and protect our communities now and for years to
Sadly, I have no option, but to act. Canning Place has been a loyal servant to
the Force over the last 40 years and there is no doubt it boasts a good
location, but it is now of an age where expensive repairs and maintenance work
are urgent and essential.
It is old, inefficient and its structure and layout are no longer fit for
purpose. The lighting and ventilation are poor and the car park needs major
structural work. Simply put, it is not in a fit state to serve the men and women
who put on the uniform every day.
Building a new Headquarters is the common sense approach to ensuring that
Officers, PCSOs and staff have the right environment and facilities to serve our
communities. Not only is it cheaper to build a new Police Headquarters than to
refurbish the existing building, it will also be cheaper to run and be fit for
modern ways of working.
This is a long term investment which, over the next 40 years, will save the
Force more than £15.5m in comparison to undertaking a major refurbishment of the
existing premises in Canning Place. All being well, a new build will also be
ready 6 months faster, hopefully opening its doors in May 2020.
There is already considerable commercial interest in the Canning Place site. By
selling it, alongside Allerton Police Station, we hope to recoup at least £9m
towards the cost of the new development. It will also open up that part of the
city for further regeneration. This decision is just the 1st step in a long process. We still need
to obtain planning permission and, if that is agreed, we will then purchase the
land in Scotland Road. We believe this is the right step to take at the right
time to save Merseyside Police vital funds and ensure the Force is equipped in
the best possible way to fight crime for decades to come."
Merseyside Police Chief Constable Andy Cooke said:- "The new building will
provide a Headquarters for the force, that's modern and fit for the purpose of Policing Merseyside.
In any decision made, our communities come 1st. The new site Offers the most
economical way to ensure we are able to continue serve the communities of
Merseyside for years to come."
Building a new Headquarters, including purchasing the land, will cost £44.63m,
but, even by conservative estimates, this figure is reduced to £35.58m through
the sale of Canning Place and Allerton Police Station. It will also allow a
number of smaller, leased buildings to be vacated.
This compares to a total cost £36.36m for the refurbishment of Canning Place,
including the expense of a 'double move' which would be required to temporarily
move all staff to an alternative location before moving them back once the work
Further yearly savings of £380,000 will also be made on the running and
maintenance costs of a new build Headquarters in comparison to refurbishing
Canning Place. The new Headquarters will also be designed to increase efficiency
through open plan working and hot desking, improving performance and work flow.
Also included within the plans is a multi storey car park with a total of 578
spaces to ensure there is no impact on the access or parking needs of nearby
residents and businesses.
Following today's decision, the Force's estates and facilities team will work
with public sector owned built environment specialists SCAPE and Wilmot Dixon to
design and plan the entire process up to the point of starting work. It is
intended that a submission for planning permission will be submitted in May
2017. If approved, it is expected that work will begin in January 2018 and be
completed in May 2020. Included within the proposals are a number of social
value targets, including 600 weeks' work for apprentices and student workshops
for nearly 700 people.
The development of Headquarters is a key element of the Commissioner's strategy
to transform the Force's stations and buildings over the next 10 years to
provide better facilities and save £2.5m every on the annual running costs which
can be directed into keeping Officers on the beat. This decision comes after
a meeting of the Police and Crime Panel, the body which scrutinises the
Commissioner's work, at which she updated them on her plans.