PLANS to move council staff out of four buildings and relocate office workers to the Civic Centre in Pontypool have been given the go-ahead.

Torfaen County Borough Council’s cabinet agreed to the plans, which will see the Civic Centre refurbished to cope with a future blended working model.

Under this model council staff will work from both the office and at home.

A report on the proposal says the council mainly utilises three buildings for corporate work – the Civic Centre, Pontypool Police Station and Ty Blaen.

The lease for Pontypool Police Station expires in August and the council does not plan to renew it. Staff based at the police station will have to be relocated elsewhere.

As part of the plan, many of the council’s services, including storage for play service, youth service, sports development and housing will be centralised at Ty Blaen.

Most staff at Ty Blaen will be relocated to the Civic Centre.

The current coronavirus pandemic has played a part in the plans to reorganise the council’s buildings, following a move to remote working.

The Civic Centre will be refurbished floor by floor, with both the ground and first floor office space benefitting from a re-design to accommodate the proposed changes.

A report on the plans said: “This is expected to be completed by 31 January 2022, the last step being relocation of staff from Ty Blaen to level three (of the Civic Centre).

“In turn the changes at Ty Blaen will follow and are expected to be completed by 30 June 2022, the last step being relocation of play services staff from Abersychan to Ty Blaen.”

The decision not to renew the lease of Pontypool Police Station will save the council £50,000, which will help cover the capital costs. The remaining capital budget for the reorganisation and refurbishment is around £450,000, which will come from council borrowing.