Rod Higgins isn’t big on lengthy speeches, so it didn’t take the Spokane Valley mayor long to put the giant pair of scissors in his hands to work on Saturday.
Higgins said a few words, thanked the appropriate people and proceeded to cut a green ribbon in front of the Spokane Valley City Hall’s new $14.2 million building, all preliminary theater to the building’s grand opening.
Other Spokane Valley City Council members and employees looked on, alongside 150 people who wanted to see the new building get formally presented to the city.
Located in front of the old University Mall on East Sprague Avenue, the 65,000-square-foot structure has been in operation since Sept. 18, nearly 15 months after ground was broken.
For the past 14 years, Spokane Valley City Hall ran out of a leased space at Redwood Plaza.
Now, nearly 15 years after being incorporated, the Spokane Valley building is designated solely for City Hall.
“The response from the community has been excellent,” said Spokane Valley City Attorney Cary Driskill. “It’s been called our Taj Mahal by some people.
“We worked hard to keep (this under budget), which we did. It was on time, and it is function built for a purpose – to provide the permitting services people come here for.”
Spokane Valley residents toured the three-story building Saturday. Some of its features include large glass windows and a state-of-the-art City Council meeting chamber that seats up to 190 people with four large flat-screen TVs.
The TV screens played drone footage of the new building.
Booths were up from various Spokane Valley ventures for the grand opening, including Spokane Valley Heritage Museum, Spokane Valley Parks and Recreation and the Spokane Valley Arts Council, which created the bronze statues in front of the new building.
“This building just makes me feel proud,” said Carol Carter, a Spokane Valley resident and Parks and Recreation employee. “It gives us a home base. I think they did a beautiful job. It’s a good spot, good location and hopefully it will drive the economy in this area.”
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