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News - 13 June 2009
Frank Gehry's vision - lost forever

King Alfred to get a face lift rather than complete makeover

Hove’s King Alfred Leisure Centre is to get £750,000 of improvements to make it more attractive to customers. This will be a stop-gap solution to an on-going challenge.

Plans to redevelop the site with a new sports centre and 750 flats in a development by famous architect Frank Gehry collapsed last year when, after many rounds of consultation, investors pulled out due to the funding crisis.

The money would be in addition to £850,000 set aside last November for essential repairs and maintenance to keep the 1938 building open.

Officials stress the money would not provide a long-term solution and that new facilities are the ultimate aim. The funding is intended to cover a period of three to five years.

A report to the council’s cabinet lists possible options for funding. However the cash would not cover them all. These include:

  • Exterior improvements and signs to make it more obvious the building is open
  • An improved fitness gym relocated to the redundant café area next to reception
  • Internal redecoration
  • Better sports equipment.

The authority has also allocated £640,000 for more essential maintenance and safety measures.

A spokesman for the council said, “Investing some money in the existing building would help bring in more customers and revenue to support the operation.

“As one of our biggest facilities it’s very important to the health and well-being of the city that we keep the building operational.

“Until the time we get a new building there are some things we can do to make it more pleasant for customers.”

Read related items on:
Built environment
Brighton & Hove City Council
King Alfred

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