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Lexington rejects bids for new city government center. Mayor says search is not over

A decades-long search to maneuver Lexington city government operations to a new location will proceed.

On Tuesday, the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council voted unanimously to reject bids for a public-private partnership for a new city government heart.

Mayor Linda Gorton mentioned the city received two bids however one was rejected for not assembly the specs of the bid necessities. The second bid was rejected. The bid was for both a new or a renovated constructing.

The names of the bidders and the proposals had been not launched Tuesday.

“The council agreed that this particular proposal would not ultimately be in the best interest of the government,” Gorton mentioned.

The vote got here after the council met behind closed doorways in govt session for greater than an hour on the finish of Tuesday’s council work session. Council is allowed to go behind closed doorways for restricted causes, together with discussing actual property transactions.

Gorton mentioned her employees would return to the council within the subsequent few months with potential proposals and mentioned the search for an inexpensive resolution for a new city government heart was not over.

“We are going to look at other possibilities and return to the council,” Gorton mentioned after Tuesday’s work session. “We are hopeful. We are optimistic. We are all kind of disappointed that the (request for proposals) didn’t work but we are hopeful.”

Vice Mayor Dan Wu mentioned finally the bid was rejected as a result of it was not within the city’s greatest curiosity to pursue the bid.

Wu mentioned the city nonetheless has choices, together with renovating a few of its present buildings or discovering a new constructing. The bids had been received in February. A request for proposals committee, which included Wu and different city officers, went forwards and backwards with the bidders to get extra info.

“It was not just cost,” however value was a part of the rationale why the bid was rejected, Wu mentioned.

Wu mentioned the choices embrace a model new constructing to renovating the present buildings. In addition to the previous Lafayette Hotel constructing, the principle city government constructing on Main Street, the city has different downtown buildings together with the Phoenix constructing on Vine Street.

The city has tried for many years to discover a new city government heart courting again to Mayor Pam Miller within the late Nineteen Nineties.

In 2018, the city considered leasing the former Lexington Herald-Leader building on Midland Avenue by way of a private-public partnership. However, that deal was finally nixed.

Other choices the city has pursued included shopping for the Central Library constructing or placing a new government heart at Phoenix Park. At one level there was a proposal to place a new city government heart at what is now City Center.

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