New Carlisle will spend $153,000 to buy a downtown building that will soon become City Hall.
The council approved a resolution this week that allows their city manager to enter into a contract for 101 South Main Street. The building is currently the home of World Threads, which will be moving out.
The building will require some renovation to turn it into city offices, New Carlisle Mayor Ethan Reynolds said, and there is no timeline for when the city administration will move in.
“Over the last eight years, we have looked into purchasing a building,” he said. “Each building had cost $200,000 or more. And renovation cost has always been super sky-high too.”
Reynolds said the city has rented the building at 331 S. Church St. for about 17 years and has paid more than $280,000 in rent since then. He said now that the city owns its own building, it can begin saving.
“It’s time we step up, buy the building which is super, super important us,” he said. “We will house our own city operation. We can house city council. It is ADA compliant.”
Currently, the city pays for repairs to the City Hall building, Reynolds said, so it makes sense that the city goes ahead and pays to buy a building.
The Clark County Auditor’s Office appraised the downtown building for about $115,000 in 2017, according to online records. The city is buying the building from Trimbach Investments LLC, according to Clark County Auditor records.
New Carlisle City Manager Randy Bridge said there have been upgrades to the building since, and the city will be paying cash, which means won’t have to pay interest on a loan.
Council members voted on the action to buy the building Wednesday night and the measure passed five to one. The only no vote was council member Ronald Cobb who cautioned council about the cost of the project.
New Carlisle Vice Mayor Williams Lindsey and council member Chris Shamy said they agreed the time was right to buy a building.
“It will bring a lot of foot traffic for the businesses in the area,” Lindsey said. “City Hall gets a lot of foot traffic almost every day. When they come down here to this building they may want to stop in one of our restaurants or stop at a store and buy something.”
He said the Main Street building was the best option for the city.
“It’s downtown, the other buildings were out on the outskirts like the current building,” he said. “It draws away from downtown. It’s the cheapest building that we looked at.”
Shamy called the agreement a historic moment for New Carlisle. Council member Mike Lowery said he supported the idea of buying the building on his Facebook page. He said there might need to be changed in downtown parking to support the transition.
“Parking on Main can sometimes have its challenges and we want to make access to the building as easy as possible,” he said. “Other than the current parking options on Main we are looking to bring back the diagonal parking on Washington next to this location. A handful of these parking spots would be assigned for ‘city building customers’ only. This will allow parking right next to the building without having to parallel park or walk far.”
The new building served as city hall in the late 1800s. A plaque etched into the Main Street building says “City Hall 1895”.
A message left with World Threads was not returned Friday. Reynolds said the business plans to move more online.