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Hove King Alfred plans put on hold for 15 years
The redevelopment of The King Alfred Leisure Centre has been ditched for up to 15 years after the council revealed privatisation plans.
The seafront site in Hove has been earmarked by planners and business leaders for years as a prime commercial development opportunity.
But after plans for Frank Gehry’s £290 million design fell through, Brighton and Hove City Council has been forced to spend £2.25m to keep the aging, eyesore building operational.
The local authority has now brought forward plans to privatise the centre, sparking fears of job losses for its 34 staff.
The council will decide which firm wins the ten year contract for its six leisure centres and three paddling pools in December.
The agreement, which will come with an option to extend it for up to five years, will come into operation in April 2011.
Officers have recommended an “escape clause” be entered so if the King Alfred is closed for redevelopment or serious maintenance problems, it will be removed from the joint agreement.
They add that a long term contract will attract more capital investment as the operator would be more likely to see a return.
David Smith, cabinet member for culture, recreation and tourism, will comment on the proposals at his meeting on Tuesday.
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