Relocate more Government offices and buildings from Douglas

A large number of Government offices are in relatively expensive areas of central Douglas.  Moving certain of these to other towns should save significantly on building rental costs, Council taxes/charges,  parking charges etc.  It will help increase the ‘vitality’ of these other towns by having additional people there during the day using the shops, cafes and other facilities.  Currently so many people commute to Douglas from Ramsey, Peel and the towns in the south which not only congests our roads but also adds to pollution from vehicle emissions.

Why the contribution is important

It not only helps to reduce Government building and related costs but also it helps to make out Island less Douglas-centric.

by Alan on April 05, 2017 at 11:38AM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.3
Based on: 9 votes


  • Posted by baociom April 05, 2017 at 11:49

    Excellent idea, the Dept of Education on Peel Road is a prime example! Whether it's owned or rented, moving from those premises to somewhere like Peel or Ramsey would release a huge amount of capital as surely they don't need premises as prestige as those.
  • Posted by TheBellhop April 05, 2017 at 11:52

    Which departments or teams would you suggest moving? It makes sense to have at least some government functions in Douglas as it is a central point for people collecting benefits/passports/work permits/income tax.
  • Posted by Axe_Mann_Cometh April 05, 2017 at 15:40

    Oh yeah and pay the civil servants to work out of town? Don't think so!
  • Posted by Alan April 05, 2017 at 16:41

    Hi 'The Bellhop'

    DEFA (St Johns) and Home Affairs (Tromode) show that Government Departments do not need their offices to be in walking distance of Ministers, MHK and Tynwald. Internal phone systems, email and Skype all enable politicians to be in immediate communication with civil servants – and are all completely free to use. So, on that basis, nearly all Government Departments could function efficiently outside Douglas.
    However, those parts of some Departments that the public need to use personally (which aren’t that many when you actually come to think of it) would probably still need a presence in Douglas.
  • Posted by TheBellhop April 05, 2017 at 16:53

    Hi Alan,

    I wasnt disagreeing - quite the opposite, just trying to build on the discussion :) See what central services would be best left where they achieve the highest 'footfall' for people using them.

    It also depends on the status of government buildings - owned or rented. I cant imagine it would be easy to sell any buildings they do currently own.
  • Posted by Henry April 06, 2017 at 12:41

    I agree, i.e. in terms of reductions in rates etc. however (a) the IOMG Strategic Asset Unit has significantly reduced the amount of rent paid by IOMG by getting workers into buildings owned by IOMG so savings may not be as great as you think; and (b) if you remove 500 Civil Servants from the center of Douglas where are they going to spend their money at lunchtime etc. who is going to support the local shops, e.g. where will they buy their sandwiches and how will they be able to nip into the other shops to spend money.

    Like all things, nothing is that straightforward, i.e. save money on buildings, lose money in the economy.

    For the record I do think that basing offices out of town where rent/rates are cheaper is the way to go...for so many reasons.
  • Posted by ManxVoter April 13, 2017 at 11:47

    Encourage CS/PS folk to work from home & rent out or sell government buildings
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