- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 30, 2015

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) - Plans to demolish West Lafayette City Hall likely will come to fruition in 2016 - about two years after the building was abandoned because of a mold infestation.

Mayor John Dennis told the (Lafayette) Journal and Courier (https://on.jconline.com/1Ugjfzw) it “should happen probably sometime late this winter or early spring.” The building has been vacant since February 2014 after cold temperatures saw pipes freeze and burst. Mold spore readings rose to dangerously high counts and city offices were moved out of the building. Municipal offices are now scattered throughout the city.

An initial plan to tear down the 44-year-old building in October was shelved after cost overruns on another project prompted city officials to tap into the $250,000 allocated to demolish city hall.

“We realized when we moved out of city hall that if we didn’t do something quickly, it would become an eyesore, and it has,” Dennis said. “We want to get that torn down as quickly as possible.”

Cost estimates were as much as $5.6 million to rehabilitate and renovate the building, the newspaper reported.



City leaders are still deciding what to do about a new city hall. Dennis said one option is to refurbish a community center and use part of it for the new city hall.

“With where we’re at right now in our evolution in the city of West Lafayette, the conversation needs to be held about what is going to be our downtown,” Dennis said. That could be in areas by State Street or farther away from Purdue University.

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Information from: Journal and Courier, https://www.jconline.com

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