New Ox­ford city hall plans pre­sented

The Covington News - - News - By Michelle Kim

Ox­ford’s city coun­cil re­ceived a sneak peak at the plans for the new two-story city hall and po­lice sta­tion at the Sept. 22 work ses­sion.

Ar­chi­tect Ben Carter, of Carter Watkins As­so­ci­ates, pre­sented the schemat­ics to city coun­cil mem­bers and at­tend­ing au­di­ence mem­bers for more than an hour, as coun­cil mem­bers ques­tioned him about ma­te­rial costs, place­ment of walls and offices, and the mer­its of a two-story ver­sus one-story construction.

In the park­ing lot, which would be sur­faced with wa­ter per­me­able “grass paving,” or con­crete blocks that al­low at least 50 per­cent of the sur­face to be cov­ered in grass, a driv­ethrough ser­vice kiosk would be de­tached from the main build­ing, but within vis­ual sight of the clerk’s of­fice. The land­scape would be ir­ri­gated with stored runoff wa­ter.

On the first floor, Carter de­scribed the city coun­cil room, which would seat up to 130 and have a raised dais, drop down screens and flat screens at each coun­cilmem­ber’s seat. The room would also serve as a court room and multi-func­tion com­mu­nity room that could be closed off from the city hall offices dur­ing af­ter-hours events. A ca­ter­ing area would al­low stor­age and prepa­ra­tion of food for events.

The de­sign also left space next to the com­mu­nity room for a po­ten­tial li­brary, should the city de­cide to pur­sue it in the fu­ture.

The first floor clerk’s of­fice would have a win­dow open­ing up to the hall­way/wait­ing area, with stor­age rooms for maps and large doc­u­ments.

The sec­ond floor would con­tain the po­lice sta­tion offices and work spa­ces, as well as an ev­i­dence stor­age room and night drop box.

The ex­te­rior was de­scribed as cov­ered with light, rus­tic brick, tin roofs and an­chored with a small “tower” over the main en­trance­way. In other busi­ness: The coun­cil con­tin­ued dis­cus­sion of an ap­pli­ca­tion by Victory Taber­na­cle Church in Cony­ers to open a com­mer­cial cof­fee house in the old rock store on Emory Street.

A youth di­rec­tor from the church said the idea for the cof­fee shop came to him as a way to reach and pro­vide a place for Ox­ford col­lege stu­dents, and that pro­ceeds from the shop would be do­nated to char­i­ties, such as or­phan­ages in Moldova and Hands Across At­lanta.

Coun­cilmem­ber Hoyt Oliver said the church re­as­sured the plan­ning com­mis­sion there would be no prepa­ra­tion of foods, only bev­er­ages, and that the only foods sold would be prepack­aged foods.

“Frankly, I don’t know that they’re go­ing to suc­ceed any­more than any­one else has in the rock store,” Oliver said.

How­ever, Oliver said he would make a mo­tion to ap­prove it at the next city coun­cil meet­ing.

Cour­tesy of Carter Watkins As­so­ci­ates

New City Hall: Schematic draw­ings for the first floor of the pro­posed Ox­ford City Hall. The po­lice sta­tion would be lo­cated on the sec­ond floor. Space was left be­hind the com­mu­nity room for a pos­si­ble fu­ture li­brary.

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