By David Jones, VP of Borough Council
Several years ago the Council of the Borough of Parkesburg realized they would soon be in need of a new home for the Police and the administrative operations of the Borough.A decision was made that these operations should remain on West First Avenue and a piece of vacant land was purchased for the purposes of building a new building.Subsequent to these actions by Borough Council, a private development group, Keystone Alliance, Inc., purchased what is known in town as the old “Johnstone” building.Their intent was to rehabilitate the building and create a state of the art business complex.
The first tenant to sign up for the new building complex was the District Court.This office was formerly located on West Main Street in the Borough.As the plans and the rehabilitation moved forward on the new building it became obvious to Borough Council that the new property would be ideal for the Police and Borough administrative office.
Borough Council at the time realized this would be less expensive and time consuming than constructing a building on the land purchased.After a lengthy negotiation period with Keystone Alliance, Inc. a rental agreement was developed for the Police and Borough administration.This rental agreement included an option for the Borough to purchase the building at any time in the future.
The District Court moved into the new facility in late fall of 2006.The Police moved in shortly after this in November of 2006.Finally, the Borough administrative offices moved in in December 2006.In the beginning of 2007 the finance committee and property committee began to explore the financial feasibility of purchasing the new GSC building.It was determined by these two committees that a purchase of the building would not only be feasible, but also would lower costs significantly and allow the borough to accrue equity in the property over time.
The Borough Council unanimously approved moving forward with the purchase of the building in early 2007 and also to explore transfer of the old Borough Hall to the Parkesburg Fire Company after the completion of the purchase of the new building.
The negotiations were a very lengthy process and many outstanding issues had to be resolved to clear the way for purchase of the building.The vacant lot the Borough owned across the street from the new building was sold to assist in financing the purchase.Rent from the District Court is also expected to reduce costs by nearly 2 million dollars over the 20 year term of the purchase agreement.
The purchase of the new property was completed in July 2007 and is now the property of the Borough of Parkesburg.