The Spokane Valley City Council broke ground Thursday on a new City Hall.
“This has been a dream for 14 years,” said Spokane Valley Deputy Mayor Arne Woodard. “I want to thank all the councilmen – and women – who have worked on this project. We just happen to be the council that oversees the groundbreaking.”
The new City Hall will be located on the corner of East Sprague Avenue and Dartmouth Road, in the northwest corner of the old University City parking lot.
The location was scoped out by a previous Spokane Valley administration, but plans to buy the land never materialized. In 2013, the city contemplated buying and remodeling the former Crescent department store nearby, but canned the idea when remodeling proved expensive. Locating all city services near CenterPlace and Mirabeau Park also was debated briefly. The city eventually purchased the 3.38 acres at U-City Mall for about $1.3 million in December 2014.
“This is the traditional heart of the city,” said Economic Development Director John Hohman.
Mayor Rod Higgins reminded everyone that the new building will not lead to tax increases.
“The new City Hall will also allow us to inject new life into this area,” Higgins said, “and God knows it needs it.”
Spokane Valley is leasing space right now for its administrative offices; Higgins said payments on the new City Hall will be less than what the city is paying to lease.
“And in 30 years the building will be ours,” Higgins said.
The project was initially priced at $14.4 million, but bids came in lower and financing was more favorable than expected, so it’s financed by $6.3 million in cash and a 30-year, $7.8 million bond for a total of $14.1 million.
Architects West designed the building with public input from Valley residents and holds the $1 million contract for design and construction services. Meridian landed the $8.97 million construction contract. The new building will be ready by August 2017.
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