Thursday, August 16, 2012

Who Planned The New Annex

$12,000,000.00 Building Already Outgrown!

I'm not sure how far down the rabbit hole you would have to go to find material like this, but in Nanaimo it seems to present itself with great frequency.

Unless you have been living in a cave, or simply ignore what goes on at city hall in order to preseve your sanity, you must be aware of the controversial $16 million decision council and staff made behind closed doors last year, to build a shiny new office for city staff.

It seems that spending $4 million to upgrade the existing annex where all city staff are currently housed during working hours was not considered to be a sound expenditure of your tax dollars, so they opted for a $16 million option complete with a $12 million contract to build a new building without going to tender.

As it turns out, the staff at city hall have already outgrown their new $12 million shiny new office before they have even moved in. It seems a portion of the $800,000 renovation at city hall is to make room for the city manager's office, human resources and payroll who will not be housed in the new city hall annex.

You might be forgiven if you would have thought that after spending $12 million on a shiny new office, it would at least have enough space to accommodate the staff currently working out of the old city hall annex. But, then again this is the city we are talking about here.

Had they bought the Dunsmuir Building for less than $7 million they would have had room for everyone as it came with over 70,000 square feet whereas the new annex is around 45,000 square feet for $12 million.

Summing Up Options For City Hall Staff Office

1. Stay put in old annex and roll the dice on the 'big one' like everyone else in town.
2. Spend $4 million to upgrade to newer seismic standard.
3. Spend $7 million on 70,000 square foot office complete with parking lots etc. giving enough room to house all existing staff and have room for expansion and also surplus space to rent out.
4. Spend $12 million (without a tender, no telling what the building is really worth) to build a shiny new office which does not have enough space to accommodate all staff in the old annex.
5. Spend another million or so, fixing up the existing city hall so the city manager can have a shiny new office in the perfectly good, but old city hall. Which was good enough for everyone else until the city manager discovered there was no room for him in the shiny new office.

You Can't Make This Stuff Up


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