Work is underway on a new Adur District Council-funded office block in Shoreham which will generate a return for the taxpayer and see hundreds of private jobs retained in the area.
In a bid to boost the local economy, the local authority is creating a new £9.5 million development on the former Civic Centre car park in Ham Road.
In what is a rare move, the council will then lease the four-storey building to growing communications company Focus Group, who will relocate from their current base in Southwick.
As work officially got underway at the site today (Wednesday March 21), council leaders hailed the move as good news for all involved.
Councillor Neil Parkin, Leader of Adur District Council, said: “I’m delighted to see this project move forward so quickly. It underlines our commitment of looking at innovative ways to support local businesses while providing value for money for taxpayers.
“This move not only is good news for a local business and good news for taxpayers; it is also good for our communities. People need places to work as well as places to live and keeping a growing national company like Focus in our area is a big boost to our local economy.”
The development will bring back into use the car park site which has been largely vacant since the Civic Centre closed in 2013.
The last few weeks has seen the site secured and preparatory work undertaken before excavation and construction starts in earnest.
Focus will then move into the office block, ensuring the retention of 250 jobs in the area while allowing it to continue to grow – with hopes of a further 200 posts created in the first 18 months of occupation.
Ralph Gilbert, of Focus Group, said: “I’m really chuffed as we have been looking forward to this moment for more than three years.
“The new modern spacious office will make the world of difference to all of our staff and will allow us as a company to keep on growing to reach our potential.”