Essex Housing launches consultation on plans for new Shenfield Library
Essex Housing, Essex County Council's housing development team, are set to launch a public consultation on proposals for the redevelopment of the site of Shenfield Library, which will include a new modern library.
The plans would see the current library building replaced with a larger and more flexible new library. It would also include the addition of a commercial unit and community meeting space. The outdoor public area at the front of the library would also be significantly enhanced.
The existing library building is expensive to maintain, in need of significant repair and is an inefficient use of the space available. The new build library would address these issues and be funded through the modest development of up to ten residential apartments above the ground floor.
The public consultation process on the redevelopment plans starts next week when local residents will be sent information about the proposed new library and a consultation website goes live. Essex Housing are inviting comments and feedback through a range of online and offline ways up until the middle of December.
Cllr Tony Ball, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Economic Development said: "Our exciting proposals to redevelop the Shenfield Library site would deliver a new, modern library as well as other potential commercial and community uses, and vastly improved outdoor public space. They have been developed in close consultation with the library service and local stakeholders to ensure the new library will deliver on the needs of library users and staff.
Cllr Susan Barker, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Customer, Communities, Culture and Corporate added: "We look forward to sharing the current proposals with the local community and encourage residents to look out for the information next week and share their views. Before finalising our designs and submitting a planning application, we will review and reflect community feedback where appropriate so that the new library is shaped by local people."
Key proposals for the redevelopment of Shenfield Library
A modern library with a floorspace of 286 square metres - larger than the current library.
All aspects of the current facility would be updated and improved, including the main library and the children's library.
It would be spacious and open-plan. Floor to ceiling glazed windows at the front and sky-lights at the rear will ensure natural light is maximised.
There would be a meeting room available for use by library users and local groups.
A commercial unit in a prime location on the corner Hutton Road and Friars Avenue could be home to a retail or cafe business for example.
The outdoor public space at the front of the library would be enhanced, with two current design options for the layout of the space.
Key points about the consultation process
Residents and businesses in a wide radius around the library will receive information through their door about the proposed development and how to feedback.
The detailed plans can be viewed at our consultation website www.shenfieldlibrary.co.uk which will go live next week. From next week residents without access to the internet can call 020 7592 9592 to request more information to be posted direct to them.
The project team will also conduct a public Zoom presentation about the plans, details of which, and how to register will be published on the information delivered to residents.
Residents can provide their feedback via a survey on the website, by phone, email and/or by post to a Freepost address.
Feedback is sought until 14 December 2020.
About Essex Housing
Essex Housing is Essex County Council’s housing development team. We were set up to build general needs, affordable and specialist housing, as well as improving and creating new community facilities. No site is the same, but we always set out to deliver well designed homes and neighbourhoods and reinvest any surpluses into public services through Essex County Council.