Manchester town hall is set to undergo a £250m overhaul, which could see a boutique hotel set up within the Grade-I listed property.
The building, while structurally sound, needs extensive work on its ageing infrastructure, before a proposal, which includes the creation of a boutique hotel, civic museum, shops and restaurants is considered.
The council first appointed surveyors in 2014 to look at the state of the town hall, which dates back to 1877, and found that it needs to be rewired and work carried out on the heating systems and plumbing systems.
The property is also riddled with asbestos.
In July, council bosses will consider the plan that would see a 50-year loan for around £250m taken out and a three-year project begin.
The proposal for the ‘small boutique hotel’ depends on whether the listed interior is suitable, while a small museum showing of ‘civic gems’ could be constructed and the town hall’s cobbled courtyard being home to small shops around its edges.
If agreed, the complete overhaul of the building would start from next year.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, deputy council leader Bernard Priest said: Deputy Council Leader Cllr Bernard Priest said: “The Town Hall is an icon of Manchester but it will be 140 years old next year and, while structurally sound, is starting to show its age. We’re reaching a point where significant elements are reaching the end of their natural lifespan and need attention soon to prevent decay and ensure modern safety and access standards.
“Detailed and specialist survey work has been carried out to assess the full condition of the Town Hall and the scope of works necessary to safeguard it for current and future generations and ensure it can play a role at the heart of the city’s life. These surveys and the assessment of options are ongoing. No final decisions have been taken and proposals will be presented to the Council’s Executive in July this year.”