PLANS for a new £1.2m library in Bicester have taken a major step forward after cash was earmarked for the project.

The library will be housed in a new £5m civic building, due to be built over Frankins Yard car park, once the town centre redevelopment is complete.

Earlier this year, Cherwell District Council’s executive agreed to set aside £5m for the civic building, which would also house its Bicester office. There would also be room for Bicester Town Council and a hotel.

Work on the civic building, part of phase two of the town centre redevelopment, could start in the summer of 2013.

Builders are set to move into the town centre next month to start work on new shops, restaurants, a Sainsbury’s supermarket and a cinema.

Oxfordshire County Council owns three separate plots of land in Old Place Yard, which is also a residential area.

These include the library’s current site, which along with the former social services offices are expected to be sold off to pay for the new library, and care home St Edburg’s House, which is due to move to a new site at Langford Village.

The county council said it would sell off the land once it was available, but Bicester councillors say they want to be consulted over what the site is used for. Michael Waine said: “I’m delighted the library is going to be part of the new town centre development.

“My concern is what would happen to council property in Old Place Yard.

“I have secured an undertaking from Jim Couchman, the cabinet member for property and finance, to consult with Bicester members before going ahead with plans.”

It is likely the library will be moved to the first floor of the civic building.