FIRST STAGE: The groundwork is well under way for a new building that will house a number of Government agencies in Whanganui.

The St Hill St office block is expected to be completed in early 2017. A Ministry of Social Development spokesperson said the new office between Guyton St and Ingestre St, places all the Ministry's services under one roof, including Work and Income, Child, Youth and Family, and Senior Services.

The spokesperson said bringing the services under one roof will enhance collaboration between staff as well as providing a modern and safe environment.

"It also means significant space savings, with the project resulting in an overall reduction of 37 per cent in our office footprint in Whanganui," he said.

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The Government had earlier announced moves to make better use of office space by sharing facilities across the country. The contract is being carried out by local firm, W & W Construction Ltd. PHOTO/STUART MUNRO050716WCSM