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  • New Hope Considers City Hall/Police Department Expansion

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    New Hope Considers City Hall/Police Department Expansion
    The City of New Hope is considering a City Hall/Police Department expansion.  A citizen task force along with members of the New Hope city staff and elected officials undertook a space needs study and engaged Wold Architects to assist in the effort. 
    The current New Hope City Hall houses both the City Hall and the New Hope Police Department.  The group considered remodel and expansion of the existing facility and building a new facility, resulting in a building that is 57,000 square feet.    Costs for remodeling and expanding the current facility came in at $17.3 million while new construction was estimated at $18.6 million.  Because the City of New Hope already owns the land, please note these estimates do not include land costs.  The task force is recommending building a new facility on property nearby that the city of New Hope already owns. 
    The current City Hall was constructed in 1968.  Four remodeling projects were since undertaken in 1973, 1988, 1992 and 1994.  The driving force behind the city’s need for a new police department/city hall is the extremely outdated police department.  It is very crowded, lacks adequate workstations, garage spaces, and training areas.  Rich Johnson, Director of Human Resources and Administration at the City of New Hope shared some staffing statistics.   In 1960, he estimated there were 18 full-time employees of the city; 5 of those in the Police Department.  In 1994, there were approximately 76 full-time positions budgeted, of which 34 were in the Police Department.  In 2016, there are 92 full-time positions budgeted and 45 of those are in the Police Department.  In 1970, the population of New Hope was 23,000; today it is 21,000. 
    We asked Kirk McDonald, New Hope City Manager a few questions about the project.  He forwarded our questions on to Joel Dunning, the architect at Wold Architects and Engineers. The answers appear below.
    Q & A
    1. Can you provide some detail in what is included in the $220/sq. ft costs for the building?  For instance, my assumption would be garage space is less expensive than office space, but I don’t see that accommodation in the estimate. 
     $220 per square foot is an average construction cost of a City Hall/police station/ garage based on very similar projects that Wold has designed and had built recently. That cost represents all construction needed for a new building or in addition. 
    1. A remodel is estimated at $80/sq. ft.  What is included in that cost? 
    $80 per square foot is an average construction cost for a remodeling with significant removal of interior spaces. Building shell and structure and some systems infrastructure will likely remain.
    1. What is included in the $4.5 million Est. Project Cost?
    The miscellaneous project cost line item accounts for non-construction related items that are necessary to complete a project. Examples are construction cost inflation, architectural fees, furniture fixture and equipment, project contingency, surveying, geotechnical testing, sewer access charges, construction management services, and bond issuance costs.
    1. In the presentation, the remodel site option calls for a 40,000 sq. ft addition.  Adding the current building sq. footage of 26,740 nets a new building of 66,740 sq. ft.  The new building is at just 57,000 sq. ft.  Why the 10,000 sq. ft difference in the two?
    What is not accounted for in the assumption is the fact that the addition remodel option demolishes 10,000 ft.² of building that is currently occupied by Parks and Recreation and the police garage.
    You can see the full task force report here.  Additional information can be found on the City of New Hope website
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