49/2023 – Building the Future Project – Progression to RIBA stage 3

Author and Job Role: Kelvin Menon – Treasurer 

Protective Marking: OFFICIAL 

Following completion of Royal Institute of British Architects (RIIBA) stage 2 to give authority to release £2.8m for the project to proceed to RIBA stage 3 and to approve the overall funding envelope for the project of £110.5m

The Building the Future Project consist of the construction of a new HQ at Mount Browne coupled with the disposal of a number of other sites.  

At the Estates Board meeting held on the 29th January 2024 the PCC was taken through the work that had been undertaken to complete RIBA stage 2 and was asked to give agreement to move to RIBA stage 3. 

Throughout RIBA Stage 2 the development team has focused on the cost and scope challenges of the project. Although significant savings were identified these have been offset by inflation and the need for larger contingencies as part of the project. This has led to a total cost envelope at the end of RIBA stage 2 of £110.5m.  

A business case was presented which outlined how the project would be funded, and what contingencies were included. The Board was taken through the financial risks and was assured that these had been considered as part of RIBA stage 2 and were included within the business case. The business case indicated that the project should pay for itself in 28 years using proceeds from surplus property disposals coupled with borrowing funded by reductions in estate operating costs. This is against a background of a current estate that needs extensive maintenance and is not fir for the purposes of modern policing. 

RIBA Stage 3 focuses on testing and validating the architectural concept, ensuring spatial coordination before producing detailed information for construction in Stage 4. Detailed design studies and engineering analysis are carried out in order to support a planning application and in turn the procurement of a contractor.   

It is estimated that the cost of this stage will be £2.8m to be funded from capital resources. It was confirmed that this had been allowed for in the Force budget and Medium-Term Financial Forecast. 

With the agreement of the Estates Board held on the 29th January 2024 the PCC is recommended to: 

  1. Approve the overall funding envelope for the Mount Browne Redevelopment Project of £110.5M including fees, design risk contingency, client contingency and a prudent approach to inflation. 
  1. Approve the progression of the project into RIBA Stage 3  
  1. Approve £2.8M of capital funding to take the project to the end of RIBA Stage 3  
  1. Approve the submission of the planning application to support progression of the project through to the next stage. 

I approve the recommendation(s): 

Signature: Police and Crime Commissioner Lisa Townsend (wet signed copy held at PCC office) 

Date:  07 February 2024 

All decisions must be added to the decision register. 



Financial implications 

This move to RIBA stage 3 could result in an increase in sunk costs if the project does not proceed. There is a risk that the project may not be deliverable within the agreed financial envelope due to cost pressures etc. 




There is a risk that planning may be refused or that requirement imposed could lead to additional costs. There is also the risk that of the project is not delivered the condition of the existing premises this will impact operational capabilities.  

Equality and diversity 


Risks to human rights