The future of Bradford Central Library could become clear next week after months of upheaval, following the revelation making the building safe could cost £4 million of taxpayers’ cash.
Last year the Telegraph & Argus exclusively revealed that the eight-floor building had been forced to close after being identified as a serious fire risk.
Many community groups, including Bradford’s Family History Society, were forced to move elsewhere because only the ground floor and first floor remained open to the public after the staircase on those floors was fire-protected.
But emergency work still has to be done to make the whole of the central staircase safe because, in its current state, it would act as a makeshift chimney in the event of a blaze.
The remaining six floors, housing the district’s archive and meeting rooms, have remained closed while Bradford Council officers decide what is the most cost-effective way of delivering the city centre library services, including whether to carry out the essential work.
Their options will be handed to Councillor David Green, the Council’s executive member responsible for culture, next week.
They could include relocating to a different building or staying where they are and paying for the work. Coun Green said: “We have to look at the practical and financial implications.
“We need to sit down and come up with the favoured direction of travel, but until I have seen the practical and financial issues it would be stupid to make any announcement.