JENNINGS — Residents got their first look last week at a $5 million plan for a new City Hall, including a proposal that would move the Zigler Art Museum to the new building.
Plans for the two-story City Hall, designed by architect firm Southwest, include renovating the former Allwest building on North Main Street and adding a 28,000-square-foot gallery for the museum.
The current City Hall is deteriorating and would cost $4.5 million to repair, officials said.
“We saw an opportunity to do something more significant than renovate a building,” architect Steven Oubre said.
The Zigler Art Museum, which is having significant issues with its existing building, could serve as the anchor for the downtown project, Oubre said.
The project is intended to spark economic growth in the downtown area by attracting more businesses and apartments while preserving its historical past, Mayor Terry Duhon said.
In addition to the museum, plans for the first floor include the city’s water department, council meeting room with seating for 50-60 people, a pre-event lobby space to be used for meetings and exhibits, and a reception area.
Administrative offices, a small conference room and storage would be located on the second floor.
City officials said they hope to have the project up for bids in January with construction starting by April and completion by summer 2014.