LaFayette Rethinking City Hall Bid

Published 10:05 am Wednesday, March 13, 2024

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Discussions of LaFayette’s new city hall continued at Monday night’s city council meeting. The city received the contractor bid on what will likely become the city’s new city hall. The building is the old bank located across the street from Renfroe’s market.

The city hosted a bid opening on Feb. 27, where two bids were submitted from Wadley Construction and Forsyth Building Company.

“I didn’t expect the prices to come in this high. I think we need to really look at things that we have talked about doing there,” Council Chairman Terry Mangram. “If we decide not to do it, we just have to go back through a whole other bid process on the same job.”

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The council did not disclose how much the bids were. Some of the costs are getting the building ADA complaint, which is required by law. However, Mangram said one of the large price points is moving the bank counter back to make the council chambers more “presentable.”

“I don’t think council meetings need to cost us this much,” Mangram said.

The council decided to table the discussion; no decision on taking or not taking the bid was voted on.

The city clerk, Louis Davidson, spoke to the council about discussions had with the Alabama Department of Transportation (ADOT), regarding the city’s traffic lights

“The traffic signals that we have in the city are in terrible condition. So they submitted some quotes for repairs for three for upgrades,” Davidson said.

ALDOT said the most pressing repair is for the light at the intersection of LaFayette St South and Highway 50.

“They say sometimes it’s holding way too long, which then causes people to want to just run it. So they’re recommended that you take care of that immediately,” Davidson said.

Council Member Michael Ellis suggested the city replace all of the lights rather than simply repairing them, calling repairs on the old lights, “a bandaid.”

Davidson gave a rough estimate of $106,000 for upgrading the three lights.

Davidson ended his time speaking by reminding the council of all the city of LaFayett has done in the past year.

“A lot of times people talk about our negative stuff, but I just made a list of our projects that we either completed, are in the middle of, or beginning to start within the last two years,” Davidson said. He listed the CDGB water tank project and other clean water projects, street and FEMA, projects, automated meters, EV charging stations, Handy Cemetery, the spillway emergency repair, park and mapping project and others.