The new 6-storey council office building is earmarked to be built on empty land next to the River Roch, near the former Yelloway coach garage.
Rochdale has justified the 181,000 sq ft offices claiming it will be more efficient, consolidating several offices spread around the town. The building will include a new public library and restaurant and cafe space.
Once preferred contractor Sir Robert McAlpine has completed the new civic building, existing council offices – known locally as the Black Box – will be demolished to make way for a speculative retail scheme.
Planners say that the design and appearance of the building is considered to be ‘excellent’ and that the development could be accommodated within the site and surrounding area without ‘harming the setting or character of the Grade One listed town hall, or the town centre conservation area’.
The planner’s report says the building has been designed to be sustainable and used in the the evening, as well as throughout the day.