La Vallette transformation plans move a step closer

THE redevelopment at La Vallette is getting closer, as an agreement for a lease has been signed between the States and Vive La Vallette LBG.

La Vallette, including the kiosk and amenities, was one of six sites identified as part of the Seafront Enhancement Programme.

The agreement means the redevelopment can move forward, transforming the kiosk and changing rooms into a more modern facility for the benefit of swimmers, and to allow for a broader range of sports, arts and other community activities to take place.

Current tenant Mim Sarre’s lease is up at the end of October, so no work can take place before then.

For now, VLV needs to agree on a building contract for the redevelopment work to begin, while continuing to raise funds to meet costs which are anticipated to be around £1.5m.

Chair of Vive La Vallette Dave Warr was delighted to have reached an agreement with the States, saying it was a major milestone in helping the charity’s vision for the area become a reality.

‘It is a historic and iconic site in a prime location and we look forward to unlocking its full potential with the expressed intention of it being a community asset for this and future generations in which we can take pride,’ he said.

The States has provided £300,000 towards the project of a total £800,000 raised so far.

VLV hopes that work on the site will start later this year.

VLV was named the preferred party for La Vallette site in May 2019 following public engagement during which the community were invited to submit proposals for what could be done to make the best use of six sites.

The charity initially focused on plans for the kiosk, changing rooms and the adjoining mound area which they propose to upgrade and improve in a way that will allow it to be more widely used.

The States will also undertake one-off works over and above the current regular maintenance on the ladies’ and children’s pools, which includes improving the pool surround.

As a charity operating like a business, VLV is confident the site will operate and ‘break even’, and any profits that are made will be re-invested back into the area.

Chair of the Seafront Enhancement Area Steering Group Deputy Gavin St Pier said it has taken longer than he would have liked to get to this point.

He said it was difficult to take public suggestions on the six sites and turn them into viable projects, but signing the agreement for lease with VLV was a big step.

‘The States is committing funding to the project, to show that we are serious about investing in our seafront’s future, but the majority will come from other sources and I’m confident VLV will be able to sell their vision to supporters to raise the total sums needed,’ he said.

While he could not speak too much on how things were progressing with the other sites, he said - as with at La Vallette - the more the sites were looked into, the more complications were found, such as figuring out how connections and services would fit into the sites.

‘That is why it has taken a while to agree what will be viable at La Vallette.’

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