Charlottetown City Hall
Council votes in favour of spending $345,000 to do work that will include opening up the main floor for the public
City Hall in Charlottetown is getting a major makeover.
Council voted 7-0 in favour of accepting the lowest bid from Brighton Construction and will spend $345,000 on the work. Couns. David MacDonald, Danny Redmond and Cecil Villard were absent.
Construction could start as early as Monday and is expected to continue for approximately 10-12 weeks.
"We've talked about this for the last couple of years. We have had a crunch for space at City Hall, it's been pretty tight,'' said Coun. Terry Bernard, chairman of public works.
"It's been so tight that the staff room upstairs, the lunchroom, had to be made into an office so there has been quite a crunch for space.''
It got so tight that the planning department was moved out of the building altogether, locating a block down Queen Street.
"Now, we're taking the opportunity to renovate City Hall appropriately, not just for the betterment of staff but moreso for the general public that comes in to conduct their business.''
The bulk of the renovations will take place on the main floor. Plans are to open things up, giving people more room to pay things like their utility bills or parking tickets. Right now, there isn't a whole lot of room to conduct that kind of business.
The reception desk, currently located on the second floor, will be moved down to the first floor.
"When a lot of people come into the main foyer they don't know where to go. (People) are trying to find the meeting rooms and so on and they don't know whether to go downstairs, upstairs (or) take the elevator. That's one issue that will be rectified.''
More room will also be created on the right-hand side of the main floor where parks and recreation.
The tourism, economic development, public works and parks and recreation departments will all be on the main floor once renovations are done.
Renovations will also be taking place on the other floors at City Hall.
"On the second floor is where the reception desk is now and that's where a lot of the staff have been crammed into. (We've got) makeshift offices there now (so once) the reception desk is moved downstairs that will create some room. We can put some cubicles or office space in there to make it more user friendly.''
The project is being paid for with funds out of the 2014 public works capital budget.