Eudora News and Information – www.eudorareporter.com
In a surprising twist to the saga of where to build a new public safety building, the City Council gave the green light to begin planning for a public safety building to be located at 10th and Main Street.
The difference this time around in putting a new Police/Fire/EMS structure at the cornerstone of downtown is the look and cost of the building. The new proposal is a Butler style building that will have a brick and wainscoating facade. The picture above is a sample and not intended to be the exact look of the final design. The cost of the 16,670 square foot building is estimated to be approximately $2.47 million and would require a mill levy increase of 1.72 mills. This is down from the 2.85 mills that was needed for the original proposal at 10th & Main.
To give some understanding to the cost of the 1.72 mill levy increase, a $150,000 house would have a tax increase of $29.67. Under the old proposal, the rate increase would have been $49.
The original project was put to a halt back in March 2012 when the City Council made the decision that a 2.85 mill increase was too large of a burden to taxpayers. In the City Council discussions at that time, the Council agreed to look for an alternative location where the could put a less expensive building than the projected $4 million structure that was initially considered.
At Monday’s City Council meeting, Council members Bill Whitten and Ruth Hughs, who took on the task of attempting to finding a new location, stated that they looked at various locations and talked to some landowners in Eudora since March. According to Whitten, no landowner was willing to sell their property to the city. Whitten and Hughs did not state any specific names of landowners they contacted or what locations they were interested in.
The next step in this long process will be put the project to bid which, according to City Administrator John Harrenstein, should take about six weeks.