One Public Estate

How we and our partners are transforming public buildings and land.

1 What is One Public Estate?

One Public Estate (OPE) is a national programme, jointly managed by Cabinet Office and the Local Government Association, that brings public sector organisations together. By working in partnership we can look at how we can use our land and buildings collaboratively to:

  • improve public services to residents, visitors, employees and businesses in the county
  • renew and rationalise the public estate so there is a reduction in the amount of money we spend on buildings
  • free up much needed land for the development of housing, commercial and employment space
  • support local economic growth
  • generate capital receipts and income.

OPE supports the delivery of a range of countywide and national priorities, including Growth Deals and blue-light (emergency services) collaboration, 21st century libraries, sustainability and co-location of public services such as health and social care. Find further information on the national programme.

2 Projects

In January 2017 the One Public Estate (OPE) West Sussex Partnership joined the national OPE programme. Since then, the partnership has been awarded revenue support grant funding of £945,000 to enable feasibility work to take place across five projects:

  • Chichester: This project is led by Chichester District Council and aims to redevelop a significant number of sites in the city’s Southern Gateway area to improve transport links, access to the historic town centre and deliver new housing, leisure and commercial space. OPE funds are being utilised to test possible solutions for part of the surplus land in the Southern Gateway.
  • Crawley: This project is being delivered via the Crawley Growth Programme and aims to achieve the economic growth outcomes agreed in the Crawley Growth Deal. The County Buildings site redevelopment will contribute towards the delivery of much needed new Grade A office spaces, new town centre homes, new retail investment and transform the business and living environment in Crawley town centre.

    This project complements the already completed and ongoing infrastructure and redevelopment projects in Crawley, such as:

  • the Eastern Gateway scheme
  • the Crawley Town Hall
  • Crawley College
  • Telford Place
  • the Station Gateway public realm and highways scheme.

    More importantly, this project is an opportunity to deliver place-making opportunities outlined in the Crawley local plan and other associated supplementary planning documents.

  • Drayton Depot: A combined highways, transport and emergency services facility. This could provide fleet maintenance facilities for WSCC, as well fire and rescue services. Viability and designs have been developed to inform decisions on future redevelopment proposals.
  • Horsham: The new combined blue light centre, which provides operational and training facilities for West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service and Sussex Police, became operational in July 2023. This project has released the former blue light sites to enable Horsham District Council and West Sussex County Council to deliver their planned regeneration of Hurst Road in line with the Local Plan.
  • Littlehampton: Studies have tested the potential to deliver a new tri-service blue light operational centre with accommodation for fire, police and ambulance services. Further work will test the potential to bring together a number of sites at Maltravers/Fitzalan Road for a new public services hub, health provision and housing.
  • Shoreham: A partnership study explored options for the site and concluded that the proposal to combine public services into a new hub was financially unviable. The NHS are exploring options to improve their existing health centre. The County Council are looking at ways to enhance the library building and marketing their vacant site to attain best value.
  • Worthing: Redevelopment of Centenary House, Durrington Lane. The County Council propose to invest in the site to unlock its development potential and has an agreement with the Police to shared proposals to progress for the site. To find out more please visit the Centenary House Key Decision.

A new access will split the site ownership and master-planning will explore opportunities for surplus land and alternative future uses, aligned with the Local Plan.

In addition to revenue support grant funding, the partnership has so far been awarded a total of £1.6m of Brownfield Land Release Funds (BLRF) which will support the delivery of new homes at the following sites:

  • The Tannery, Chichester comprises a redundant office accommodation on the site of a former tanning factory. The BLRF will support the development of 30 new homes through funding decontamination and demolition works.
  • Former Barton’s Infant School in Bersted. The site has been vacant since the school closed in 2014 and BLRF funds will be used to demolish the vacant school building and release a clear site for the construction of a mix of 21 homes.
  • The Arcade, Bognor Regis. Arun District Council is bringing forward proposals to refurbish the building upper floors, (which are currently vacant) and create up to 35 character town centre apartments, including some new build and additional ground floor retail space. BLRF funding will support enabling works to create a new building shell - a specialist consultancy team of surveyors, engineers and architects have been appointed to progress this phase of the project.

3 West Sussex Fire & Rescue

West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service (WSFRS) has 25 fire station sites across the county. The One Public Estate (OPE) programme provides an opportunity to deliver emergency services facilities in new, modern buildings for WSFRS, alongside the police and ambulance service.

The fire service elements of OPE will also help enable other projects by freeing up strategic sites that will allow partner organisations to deliver regeneration and housing, and to create new jobs.

All of the proposed WSFRS projects are in development with feasibility and viability studies progressing. Any fire station relocation will be subject to public consultation, to include:

  • an assessment of community risks
  • the effect on WSFRS emergency response standards
  • the impact on retained firefighters, who must live or work close to the fire station when on call.

All opportunities to renew the WSFRS estate are being considered in the context of the statutory duty to collaborate with other blue-light services. We are working in partnership with them to explore how OPE projects could support this priority.

4 Partners

One Public Estate (OPE) is about working with partners to improve how we all deliver services to the public. A total of 18 organisations originally committed to joining the OPE West Sussex Partnership. Since then the partnership has grown, with a total of 22 organisations now involved.

West Sussex County Council (WSCC) is the lead authority for the partnership, and our partners are:

  • Adur District Council
  • Arun District Council
  • Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Chichester College Group
  • Chichester District Council
  • Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership
  • Community Health Partnerships
  • Crawley Borough Council
  • Crawley Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Homes England
  • Horsham and Mid Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Horsham District Council
  • Mid Sussex District Council
  • NHS Property Services
  • Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust
  • Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • Sussex Police
  • Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service
  • Worthing Borough Council.

5 Further information

For more information about the programme please contact us:

Last updated:
3 May 2024
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