City departments seek homes

The city will negotiate a contract to house its public works and planning departments after the council rejected the idea Monday night of using the Guy Cole Convention Center.

City Attorney Craig Ritchie said the negotiations wouldn't necessarily be only with the departments' current landlord at 615 N. Fifth Ave.

In July, city staff proposed moving the two city departments - which include 18 city and employee vehicles plus visitor traffic - to Carrie Blake Park.

Alternatives included moving to rented or city-owned portable buildings next to City Hall.

Councilor Paul McHugh said he was concerned about taking park space for nonpark use and suggested extending the two departments' current lease.

"It's (Carrie Blake) a park," Mayor Laura Dubois said, "not an office park."

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