Decision details

Decision details

Additional feasibility funding for the refurbishment of 1-3 George Street

Decision Maker: Executive Director (Development)

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: No


1-3 George Street comprises a vacant mixed use building in a prime city-centre location. The building’s condition has deteriorated internally and in its current condition does not meet minimum regulatory energy performance and other standards. It now requires significant works to refurbish the building to provide a rental income to the council.

The project will deliver an increased level of refurbishment and will improve the attractiveness of the building to the market. Works are to include a new external lift servicing all floors, internal layout improvements to support flexible working, enhanced services, and fabric improvements to improve energy efficiency, a rear external terrace and internal lightwell.

The proposal aims to secure a BREEAM Very Good, sustainability standard through further improvements to the building fabric, both air-tightness and insulation, enhancement to triple glazed windows, as well as the use of PV at roof level.


To allocate feasibility funding of £80k to extend the appointment of the Project Management and QS – AAP Projects Ltd, The Design team led by the Architects ADP and including Mechanical & Electrical, Structural and Principal Designer roles.

In addition, agents to prepare the valuations, as part of the business case, will be appointed.

As part of the feasibility, some enabling works and survey work with associated costs, will be required to confirm the condition of the building and these costs are included in the funding allocation.

This funding is in addition to £65K of feasibility funding previously approved for RIBA Stages 1-3.  The earlier funding allocation was insufficient to cover all costs to Stage 3 and this has added £23K. In addition the costs of the technical design work to RIBA Stage 4 of £32K and a contingency of £15K for survey works and £10K for valuation fees have now been added to the feasibility requirement.

The total additional consultant fees of £55K have been defined by competitive tender and are fixed costs.

A bid for OxLEP grant funding for the refurbishment of 1-3 George Street and the redevelopment of Cave Street Standingford House has been successful, and approval to enter into contract for the grant funding has been granted by Cabinet on the 15th July 2020.

Alternative options considered:

The consultancy appointments of QS, Project Manager and Architect led Design Team were previously tendered and competitive fee quotes obtained; however, the original agreed feasibility funding was to cover RIBA Stages 1-3 only. The funding allocation was insufficient to cover all costs to Stage 3 and the additional costs of the project to Stage 4.

The Stage 4 works are now required to enable the construction works to be tendered in line with the OxLEP grant funding programme which requires completion of the George Street works by end March 2021.

This timetable requires urgent completion of the planning, and technical design work, to enable a contractor to be appointed by November 2020. An urgent funding decision was required as there was insufficient time to tender the works and still meet the project programme. This would have placed the grant funding and therefore the project at risk.

Signed off by senior officers:

Tom Bridgman, Director of Development

Decision taken in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Asset Management and the Cabinet Member for Planning and Housing Delivery.

Publication date: 04/09/2020

Date of decision: 27/07/2020