PROSPER – Sometime this fall, Prosper residents will get a first glance at what a new Town Hall might look like, as the Town will enter into a contract for the design of the anticipated multipurpose facility, says Town Manager Harlan Jefferson.
“Council has instructed staff to proceed with a design contract,” he said. “The design is, of course, a starting point for the Town. At this early juncture, the Council and staff can begin to think about what this facility looks like, what it houses and what amenities are important for us to include.”
The site for the new facility is the land which now contains Main Street Park, southwest of the current Town Hall building. While the anticipated construction of Town Hall at that location will displace some practice ball fields, the recent construction of three backstops and four batting cages at Frontier Park adequately replaces them.
“A new Town Hall along with offices and space for other municipal activities has been a topic of interest since the 2011 Bond program, when funds for land acquisition and design were overwhelmingly approved,” he said. “Then, last year, the Town brought in an architect to conduct a needs assessment to begin to envision the size of the facility based on its occupant services.”
The Main Street Park footprint is 3.78 acres and, based on preliminary discussions, can accommodate nearly 300 parking spaces, both on the site and along the adjoining streets. The initial 36,000 sq. ft. building can be expanded to as much as 62,000 sq. ft. to allow maximum flexibility for future growth, and would be a two-story structure.
Consideration has been given to include Administration, Municipal Court, Development Services, Building Inspections, Code Compliance, Planning, Engineering, Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, and the
Community Library in the initial building.
The rapid growth in the number of both library patrons and program over the last year has demonstrated the need for a larger, more accessible facility. Many cities favor Town Hall designs that include a library, taking full advantage of one plot of land, a single building and all of the associated costs of climate control, parking, landscaping, security and overall convenience.
“While the process will begin soon after we sign the contract for a design in May, Town staff will get its first review in August and the Council will review it in September,” said Jefferson. “Then, a final design will be submitted to the Town by the end of 2015.”
Once the design is finalized, the project architects will take several months to bring back a final cost estimate.
“It’s a long process with many steps along the way,” said Jefferson. “Throughout the process, staff will ensure that the community is kept abreast of the progress.”