WORK on the new £2m Portchester Community Centre is finally due to begin next month.
Fareham Borough Council has announced plans to start building a new centre in Westlands Grove, replacing one which is in a state of disrepair.
The new centre will be built on land immediately south of the existing one.
The money for the project has been provided by Hampshire County Council on the condition that it includes a children’s centre.
The contract has been awarded to a company in Alton, although apprentices from the area may be drafted in to help with the construction.
Councillor Sean Woodward, leader of the council, said: ‘I’m pleased that the contract for building the community centre has been awarded and work will be able to begin shortly.
‘It will be a fantastic facility for the people of Portchester following the existing centre falling into disrepair.’
The county council has loaned Fareham Borough Council £1m for the project, and awarded an additional £400,000 for the new children’s centre.
An extra £600,000 will be raised from the sale of the land to county council, which will then be leased back to Fareham.
Once the centre has been completed, the old building will be demolished and the site landscaped within 12 weeks.
Ward councillor for Portchester Nick Walker, said: ‘This is important.
‘The sooner this gets built the better.
‘It will mean a lot to the people of Portchester. It’s a brand new all-purpose facility. It will be modern with everything built into it.’
The centre will be fitted with CCTV in a bid to deter anti-social behaviour in the area.
There will be a police facility on site where officers will be based.
Work will begin on February 6, with completion scheduled for October.