A new municipal hall could cost Osoyoos between $7 million and $10M.
The designs and costs of a two- or three-storey replacement for the existing 50-year-old building were met with some pointed questions from council on June 28.
Presented were the options of a three-storey design, at $9,348,320 and two storeys for $7,383,145.
“I like the design, but it’s a horrendous number for us to even consider, so of course, that’s a bit of a shock, but we all knew this was coming,” said Mayor Sue McKortoff.
Community growth is the driving force behind the significant investment.
Coun. C.J. Rhodes claimed the community doesn’t have the necessary land to grow to the point that three storeys would be necessary, or could afford the cost.
Other questions involved parking, and whether the third storey could be installed later. Just over $4 million has been earmarked in the financial plan for 2024 for a new town hall, although that sum is now out of date.
The third storey was listed as having space for an emergency response centre and lease space. Discussion of the project is likely be part of 2022’s financial planning.
Since 2006, the community has grown at a rate of six per cent up to the last census in 2016, according to a housing needs report in February 2021. That was predicted to increase to nine per cent from 2020-25, which would add another 430 people to the community.
Thirty-two employees work at the town hall, which has been the subject of replacement discussions for years. Meeting the needs of an estimated population of 6,000, the town would need about 36 employees, or more if the projections are short of actual growth.
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