13 October 2009,

Leeds LIFT - Foundation Stone unveiled at £7m service centre in Harehills

A foundation stone for a new £7million state-of-the-art joint service centre was unveiled yesterday.

A special stone unveiling ceremony is being held to mark the start of a 50-week construction project on the Joint Service Centre (JSC), which will transform residents' access to local services in Harehills, north east Leeds.

The Harehills JSC is part of a partnership venture between Leeds City Council, NHS Leeds, and Community Ventures Leeds Ltd and will be completed Summer 2010. When fully operational the centre will be home to:

  • A new library

  • NHS services, including Primary Mental Health Care

  • Leeds City Council Customer Services

  • Leeds City Council Environmental Health Services

  • Job Shop

  • Advice centre

  • Leeds Credit Union

Guests attending the ceremony will view site plans showing what the completed building will look like. The plans show how the building has been designed to fit in with the character of the local area.

Councillor Richard Brett, Leader of Leeds City Council, said:

"This centre is an important part of the council's work to improve resident's access to key services and an excellent example of what can be achieved by working in partnership, being joint-funded by Leeds City Council and Leeds NHS."

Nigel Fenny, Chief Executive at Community Ventures Leeds, said:

"Community Ventures Leeds are delighted to be working with Leeds City Council and NHS Leeds in providing these new facilities which will support services to the local community."

The new Joint Service Centre will regenerate the current Compton Road Library Site and will be a welcoming and the striking building with state-of-the-art facilities all under one roof. Part of the development, the old Compton Road Library historic frontage, will be preserved and retained and a new large impressive modern extension will be constructed. A new mobile library is currently providing services until the centre is completed.

The Harehills centre is one of two new joint service centres being built in Leeds - the other is at Chapeltown. Both centres will contribute towards the regeneration of their local area and are part of a council initiative to improve resident's access to key services by working in partnership with the NHS.

The Harehills centre will complement recent investments in Shine, St James's Hospital, local schools, parking and junction improvements as well as local initiatives to improve back streets, activities for young people and community ownership of local community centres.