PLANS to refurbish Inverurie Town Hall and add an extension to provide office accommodation have been lodged by Aberdeenshire Council.
The development would involve refurbishing and improving access to the category B-listed building, alongside the creation of a triangular extension to the rear to bring council services into the town centre.
The local authority said that the extension would cater for up to 350 members of staff working on a flexible basis, allowing for the release of other council sites in the area. The building would also provide space for a customer service point and registrar services, alongside general office space and meeting rooms.
It added that the existing town hall would remain a community facility, with a new ramped entry and push pad operated doors providing better access, along with an internal lift giving access to the first floor of the building.
Inverurie Library would also remain in use, with the plans including the refurbishment of its exterior. Further to this, a nearby a publicly accessible ‘changing places’ facility would be created in the extension – providing 24/7 access directly from the street.
As well as refurbishing the town hall, the project aims to make public services accessible for all in a central location and provide improved additional spaces for community use, while in turn increasing footfall in the town centre.
The council said that while the design is ‘clearly modern’, the extension would mainly be built in reconstituted stone with the colour and mix of materials reflecting those of the buildings in the town centre.
Public access would be available on the first two levels of the building, with office accommodation on the second and third levels. The highest part of the building would be a bold stair column and circulation area providing views of the striking town hall clock tower.
Garioch area manager, Ann Overton, said, “This project forms part of Aberdeenshire Council’s Office Space Strategy, and also follows our ‘town centre first’ principles.
“Inverurie Town Hall is a landmark building in the town, and community input has been key in developing proposals that are both bold and sympathetic.
“Accessibility has been a key factor in discussions, both in terms of making it easier for people to make use of the community facilities in the town hall, as well as easy access to council services.”