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New City Hall Project
Planning and Community Development
New City Hall Project
Planning and Community Development
New City Hall Project
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Do we really need a new City Hall?
The City has been in its current location since 1951. An April, 2016 "Space Needs Assessment" document prepared by Randall Scott Architects, Inc. revealed the required space to properly provide service to our citizens and allow for future facility growth.
What city departments will be in the new City Hall?
• Boerne Utilities Customer Service and Billing for all utilities - electric, water, wastewater, natural gas, and garbage;
• Administrative and Legal departments;
• Public Works - administration, construction and permitting - service counters and plan rooms for construction review, permitting, contractor meetings;
• Code Enforcement
• Planning and Community Services;
• Economic Development;
• Information Technology;
• Mayor’s office and City Council chambers and meeting rooms for city appointed commissions and committees;
• Human Resources;
Are there any other three story buildings on Main Street?
Yes, there are two others:
Boerne City Center at 194 Main Street South
Boerne Gateway Building at 1580 Main Street South
Additionally, the Kendall County Courthouse, located on E. San Antonio and Saunders, and the Mercantile Building on W. Blanco, are also 3 stories.
How many employees will be working in the new building?
Current staffing level in the existing city hall and adjacent buildings on the existing campus is 60; however, up to 86 people are anticipated to move to the proposed city hall building by 2018. The proposed new space allows for anticipated staff growth of a possible 15 more positions over the next 25-30 years. Staffing levels will increase only as needed to meet the service needs of the community.
Will there be a "drive through" window for payments?
Drive thru windows are not planned for this facility. With new technology and online payment options it does not appear that a drive thru window would be heavily utilized.
Why can't the current City Hall be expanded?
The current city hall building is 106 years old. It has been remodeled multiple times to accommodate increasing staff since being purchased from the Boerne Independent School District in 1951. It has served as city hall for 65 years.
The idea of expansion and remodeling was addressed in the 2001-02 study by Stan Klein of Wagner & Klein Architects. There are currently 2 historic structures on the City Hall property. Per the Texas Historical Commission, the existing City Hall must retain its historical architectural integrity. Renovations to the interior have occurred multiple times. Expansions that would add additional buildings or increase the footprint of the existing building is challenging due to the topography, creating parking issues for citizens and employees. Ultimately the City Council tabled these ideas and opted to add space thru portable offices.
Why build it for 30 years out? Why not for today?
Costs to build a new commercial building will continue to increase over time. Building a structure now to serve the city's needs for numerous decades is the most cost efficient plan. If we build only for today, in a short amount of time there will be needs for more space and construction would likely be at a much higher cost than it is today.
Who is on the City Hall Project Ad Hoc Committee and how was it formed?
Boerne City Council approved the appointments, each council member submitted an individual from their respective district for representation on the committee (one from each voting district).
The Ad Hoc Committee will assist Council and City Staff with a review of the proposed City Hall needs assessment, the suggested square footage and estimated cost range for construction, and the proposed exterior look.
Christina Bergmann - Chairperson
David Spencer - District 1
Barbara Racinowski - District 2
Kerry Phillip - District 3
Ben Adam - District 4
Cathy Spain - District 5
Why is the building so close to Main Street?
The conceptual drawing was not actually to scale; the building will have a pedestrian entrance from Main Street along with appropriate landscaping. The focus on parking has been moved between the proposed city hall and the library so both buildings will share the space. We are proposing that there be a distance between Main Street and the new building to create a more "public space" around the exterior.
What is the height limit for buildings on Main Street?
The city's current zoning regulations in B2 and B3 commercial zones allow for a maximum building height of 40 feet; however city council may approve a height over 40 feet or three stories when appropriate. No variance will be required, just the approval of the city council. The professional architectural firm working on the new city hall design has been been aware of this regulations all along.
How was Randall Scott Architects chosen?
A Request For Qualifications(RFQ) was issued and Randall Scott along with 9 other firms responded to the request. Out of 10 that responded, 4 were chosen based on staff rankings, for a face to face interview to present their qualifications.
On August 25, 2015, the City Council then made the decision to work with Randall Scott. (RESOLUTION NO. 2015-R77)
The firm of Randall Scott Architects out of Dallas, was chosen because in responding to the RFQ his firm had the best qualifications in addressing city halls. The firm has designed and built over 20 City Halls throughout the state.
Minutes of the City Council Meeting - Aug 25, 2015
Is there a catering kitchen proposed for the new City Hall?
There is not a catering kitchen proposed for the new City Hall. However, there are several area coffee bars and a "typical" break room for the entire building is proposed on level 2 - with a refrigerator, microwave, and table and chairs. There is a galley style kitchen, about 80 sq ft, proposed next to the council conference room. This would be used when working meetings are held that include a meal; i.e. a working lunch meeting.
What about drainage issues?
There is currently a large stormwater detention facility on the city campus, built when the library was constructed. The detention facility was built to serve the entire property.
It has been stated that this would not cost taxpayers any additional taxes. How is that possible?
Staff is proposing to issue certificates of obligation for the construction of the new city hall. This will be paid off in 20 to 25 years. The City would propose the sale of the City Hall for approximately $2.5 million. Additionally, with the implementation of the new CPS Energy power supply contract, the City Council was able to reduce electric rates by $500,000 per year and created a $1 million quality of life reserve fund. The sale of the existing property and the quality of life fund as well as future tax base and sales tax growth would cover the debt service payment.
This is the financial plan, Staff and City Council have worked on and developed to build a new City Hall without a tax increase.
If the City of Boerne moves ahead with the new city hall project, will it completely wipe out the general fund?
No. The city is required by law to keep at least a three month reserve in the general fund. The City of Boerne does better than that and has a six month reserve in the general fund. We cannot, and will not, deplete the general fund ever.
The nationally known financial rating agencies, Moody's and Fitch, recently reviewed the city's financial picture, its policies and future known major projects. Both rating agencies upgraded the City of Boerne bond ratings. This is a significant sign of the city's positive and strong financial position and future plan expenditures for all it's 27 different departments.
Could that money be better spent on other things citizens use?
The City of Boerne allocates money to other capital projects and city operations through the annual budget process - there are 27 different city departments that are funded annually. The City Council is actively engaged in this process and approves the annual budget, as well as the Five-year Capital Improvement Program, each September. A new city hall building has been discussed for 10 plus years, and postponed several times. There will always be a projects that City funds can be spent on and we will continue to budget for those needs. The City Council annually sets priorities and a new City Hall became on of those several years back. The City must have the ability to serve our citizens in an effective and efficient manner. Our employees need the proper space to perform these services. Previously a new police, emergency operations and municipal court facility was built, the fire station was expanded. A new public library was built. An addition to the street department maintenance facility was added. A $29 million wastewater facility was completed in the past few years. As a city grows, new and larger facilities become necessary to serve the customers. Per City Council direction, it is now time to address the City Hall space needs.
Proposed City Hall
Map of City Council Districts
Agendas & Minutes
Agendas & Minutes after Sept 15, 2015
Legal Notices & Public Hearings
Things to do in Boerne
Development Projects in Boerne
Boerne Road Projects
Hill Country Mile