Plans for a redeveloped library in Sherwood at no cost to local council taxpayers are taking shape.

The site on Spondon Street off Mansfield Road in the heart of Sherwood is owned by the City Council, and includes former social services offices, public toilets, a car park and three retail units, as well as the existing library. The buildings are in a poor state of repair and the library doesn’t meet the standards now expected by library users.

Over a number of years, the council has carried out a programme of creating fewer, better libraries which has seen an upsurge in user numbers. Many district libraries are now housed in joint service centres alongside housing offices and doctors surgeries, and a new Central Library is to be developed alongside the new Broadmarsh shopping centre, car park and bus station.

The proposals for Sherwood will see a mixed-use development including a new high-quality library and a police contact point, along with shops, homes and offices. The council is undertaking an exercise to identify a preferred developer to buy and develop the site, with the Council Leader Cllr Jon Collins signing a decision to identify a preferred developer and refine the scheme. Work will continue with the selected developer to iron out all the details before a contract is signed.

The arrangements mean the new library is provided at no capital cost to the council, with the preferred bidder having the opportunity to develop the rest of the site, subject  to the usual planning controls. It will be more energy efficient and economical to run and is expected to attract more people with its modern facilities. The public toilets will remain and a new public car park will replace the existing one.

There are two alternative public car parks available nearby on Winchester Street and Hall Street for use during the works. Sherwood is also very well served by excellent public transport, enabling people to access the local shops and amenities.

The City Council’s Corporate Director for Development and Growth, Chris Henning, said: “Sherwood Library is past its economic life and no longer comes up to the expectations of library users. Developing a brand new library will create a much better facility for the local community, alongside a new police contact point.

“By selling this site to a developer under the arrangements we’ve agreed, we gain a new library at no cost to council taxpayers.”