Council gets a look at ideas for new City Hall

Council gets a look at ideas for new City Hall

EUGENE, Ore. - The Eugene City Council got a look Monday at ideas for a new Eugene City Hall.

Of the options on the table, keeping the existing building isn't one of them.

Councilors want an open, engaging design to "send an enormous message about what Eugene considers itself to be," Councilor Chris Pryor said. "That government is not separate and unique and above the people, but with the people."

Pryor said the current City Hall was built in an era when government was turned inward. Creating an open and inviting city hall is top priority.

"Create a destination for City Hall beyond just coming to deal with city business," Councilor Claire Syrett said. "It could be a stop on a tour of downtown, to visit the artwork and historical information."

The council and architects say the new building must be functional and symbolic of eugene.

"Making it an operationally efficient building, a functional building, but also that it's an important symbol in the city," said John Rowell with Rowell Brokaw Architects.

The new building will be scaled down to a maximum of 25,000 square feet.

It will include a city manager's and mayor's office, plus a council chamber and community meeting rooms.

The City has moved out of City Hall. The police department relocated to Country Club Road. Other city offices are in leased space around the city. The City Council has been meeting in the Lane County Courthouse.