Lexington city council members held a workshop yesterday to hear from an engineering group regarding the possibility of building a new city hall on top of the current transit center parking garage. Poage Engineers & Associates President Chris Kelly told council the building could support up to a 15- story structure above it.
Lexington’s Facilities and Fleet Management Director Jamshid Baradaran says there are lingering questions about structural support. “The question has always been the current condition of the structure, considering that they had not in the initial design anticipated the amount of rock that they encountered when they started digging,” said Baradaran.
Baradaran says some redesigning was then done to accommodate the rocky base when the original transit center was built.
Chief Administrative Officer Sally Hamilton said the transit center site raises questions about traffic along High Street. She said another option might be to level the current transit garage and start over.
Vice Mayor Steve Kay believes the whole discussion about where to build a new city hall should wait until newly elected Mayor Linda Gorton takes office. “To look at our options, to look at financing, location, and traffic and anything anybody else wants to look at, and ideally, get a broad consensus among council members about how to proceed and a commitment to support that process and the results of it,” noted Kay.
Kay envisions the council getting together on city hall possibilities before the end of January.