Executive committee to determine whether £1 sale of Odeon building goes ahead

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: The former Odeon building in Bradford city centre The former Odeon building in Bradford city centre

A decision over whether Bradford Council buys the former city centre Odeon building for £1 will be made by the authority’s Labour-run executive, it has been confirmed.

There had been speculation that the strategic director of regeneration, Barra Mac Ruairi and Councillor David Green, leader of the Council, could be granted the authority to decide the future of the run-down 1930s building, which has been empty since 2000.

But last week, members of the regeneration and economy overview and scrutiny committee recommended that “due to the risks associated with the site and the high political profile the final decision in relation to the transfer of the asset should be made by the Council’s executive.

As a result the opposition leader, Councillor Glen Miller, leader of the Conservative group, called for clarification on the issue, stating that as many councillors as possible should be involved in taking the decision – such as at a meeting of full Council, where all 90 members would be able to have their say.

Coun Miller said: “I welcome the fact that Councillor Green has recognised that a decision regarding such an important local landmark as the Odeon should not be delegated to one councillor and one officer.

“Therefore, to an extent I welcome confirmation that the executive committee will take the decision, though in light of the fact that the executive is made up entirely of Labour councillors, who do not make up a majority of the Council, I do think that it would be even better were the whole Council to be allowed to vote on the Odeon’s fate. This would ensure transparency”.

Coun Green added: “I think it’s only right and proper that a decision on something with this amount of public interest, is made in an open and democratic way, as we’ve said since the offer to buy the Odeon was first made.”

The opportunity to save the building comes after the Homes and Communities Agency, which owns it, terminated a long-standing legal agreement in September with developer Langtree, which had wanted to demolish the building and build a £40 million New Victoria Place development of offices, a hotel and apartments.

The Council is considering an offer from the HCA to take the building on for £1 plus £100,000 of maintenance cash.

Comments (13)

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7:53am Thu 7 Feb 13

angry bradfordian says...

As it is only a matter of weeks since the council issued their city centre 'masterplan' which said they wanted Grade A office space (as there obviously aren't enough empty offices in Bradford) on the Odeon site, I suspect I can see which way the decision is going to go.

On the other hand, if they decide to keep it, why are they wasting money paying consultants to write a report saying it should be demolished?
As it is only a matter of weeks since the council issued their city centre 'masterplan' which said they wanted Grade A office space (as there obviously aren't enough empty offices in Bradford) on the Odeon site, I suspect I can see which way the decision is going to go. On the other hand, if they decide to keep it, why are they wasting money paying consultants to write a report saying it should be demolished? angry bradfordian

8:17am Thu 7 Feb 13

mad matt says...

Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you!
Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you! mad matt

8:26am Thu 7 Feb 13

Joedavid says...

Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding.
T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January.
Where is it?
What does it say?
Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people.
Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding. T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January. Where is it? What does it say? Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people. Joedavid

8:34am Thu 7 Feb 13

Avro says...

mad matt wrote:
Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you!
Totally agree!
[quote][p][bold]mad matt[/bold] wrote: Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you![/p][/quote]Totally agree! Avro

8:46am Thu 7 Feb 13

angry bradfordian says...

mad matt wrote:
Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you!
Depends what you mean by ''doing it up'

A million pounds may be a wise investment if it helps turn it into a venue that attracts people into the city centre. They've just spent £24m (probably more) the the pond for solely that reason.

The council spent an awful lot of money in refurbishing the Alhambra in the 80's and I doubt anyone could say it was anything other than money well spent.
[quote][p][bold]mad matt[/bold] wrote: Council buys it for £1 and it'll cost the council tax payers £1million to do it up - no thank you![/p][/quote]Depends what you mean by ''doing it up' A million pounds may be a wise investment if it helps turn it into a venue that attracts people into the city centre. They've just spent £24m (probably more) the the pond for solely that reason. The council spent an awful lot of money in refurbishing the Alhambra in the 80's and I doubt anyone could say it was anything other than money well spent. angry bradfordian

9:36am Thu 7 Feb 13

Thee Voice of Reason says...

Barra and Green don't appear to be able to run a bath so I'm worried if the decision was left to these two.
Barra and Green don't appear to be able to run a bath so I'm worried if the decision was left to these two. Thee Voice of Reason

10:19am Thu 7 Feb 13

markjoe says...

What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue?

Why does this council mess around trying to work out pie in the sky ideas instead of looking at what is available to them.
What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue? Why does this council mess around trying to work out pie in the sky ideas instead of looking at what is available to them. markjoe

10:51am Thu 7 Feb 13

Joedavid says...

"What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue? "
Nothing as far as I understand it they await the next step after the Council decides the above.
Think there are 2 or 3 schemes in the pipeline, they have been reported in the T&A.
"What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue? " Nothing as far as I understand it they await the next step after the Council decides the above. Think there are 2 or 3 schemes in the pipeline, they have been reported in the T&A. Joedavid

11:35am Thu 7 Feb 13

Albion. says...

Joedavid wrote:
"What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue? "
Nothing as far as I understand it they await the next step after the Council decides the above.
Think there are 2 or 3 schemes in the pipeline, they have been reported in the T&A.
Exactly.
[quote][p][bold]Joedavid[/bold] wrote: "What happen to the developer who wanted to turn it into a music venue? " Nothing as far as I understand it they await the next step after the Council decides the above. Think there are 2 or 3 schemes in the pipeline, they have been reported in the T&A.[/p][/quote]Exactly. Albion.

12:31pm Thu 7 Feb 13

johnhem says...

Joedavid wrote:
Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding.
T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January.
Where is it?
What does it say?
Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people.
don't expect any help from the T&A, they have their own agenda. anything that threatens the st georges hall affects their plans for expansion/move, and a music venue could do just that.
[quote][p][bold]Joedavid[/bold] wrote: Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding. T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January. Where is it? What does it say? Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people.[/p][/quote]don't expect any help from the T&A, they have their own agenda. anything that threatens the st georges hall affects their plans for expansion/move, and a music venue could do just that. johnhem

12:43pm Thu 7 Feb 13

angry bradfordian says...

johnhem wrote:
Joedavid wrote:
Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding.
T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January.
Where is it?
What does it say?
Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people.
don't expect any help from the T&A, they have their own agenda. anything that threatens the st georges hall affects their plans for expansion/move, and a music venue could do just that.
That would explain why when the story about the new city centre masterplan was in the T&A, the fairly major bit about demolishing the Odeon wasn't mentioned but waffle about 'business forests' and 'cultural expansion zones' was.

Interesting to see that masterplan includes plans to 'boost nightlife' but also stop the chance of a new concert venue.
[quote][p][bold]johnhem[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Joedavid[/bold] wrote: Should be the whole 90 Councillors that decide, not just a few, not sounding right this new situation, but certainly wrong that 2 men would be deciding. T&A should be asking for the report on the buildings condition that should have been ready at the end of January. Where is it? What does it say? Get pushing T&A look after Bradford people.[/p][/quote]don't expect any help from the T&A, they have their own agenda. anything that threatens the st georges hall affects their plans for expansion/move, and a music venue could do just that.[/p][/quote]That would explain why when the story about the new city centre masterplan was in the T&A, the fairly major bit about demolishing the Odeon wasn't mentioned but waffle about 'business forests' and 'cultural expansion zones' was. Interesting to see that masterplan includes plans to 'boost nightlife' but also stop the chance of a new concert venue. angry bradfordian

1:28pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Not so simple says...

Bradford council is not fit for purpose.

This is a ten, sorry twenty, sorry best part of fifty year observation.

False promises, rushed developments and demolitions.

Wasted resources, negative impact on the residents of Bradford and the reflection of the city throughout the land.

Sack the lot of em, better still do em for treason
Bradford council is not fit for purpose. This is a ten, sorry twenty, sorry best part of fifty year observation. False promises, rushed developments and demolitions. Wasted resources, negative impact on the residents of Bradford and the reflection of the city throughout the land. Sack the lot of em, better still do em for treason Not so simple

7:38pm Thu 7 Feb 13

mr-dog says...

Knock it down.
Knock it down. mr-dog

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