Mayor Gary Christenson is seriously considering relocating Malden's City Hall to rented office space, he said Wednesday.
Christenson has vowed to demolish the current City Hall and reconnect Pleasant Street, which was divided when the government center was built in 1975.
The city put out a request for relocation proposals in November and received three from Malden landowners, including one in which the city would lease approximately 30,000 square feet of office space on the second floor of 200 Exchange St., a property owned by KBS Realty Advisors.
Leasing would allow the current building to be vacated and demolished as soon as the spring, Christenson said. It would take years if the city chose to build a new city hall at a new location and wait for it to be completed to move, he said.
The current building is about 125,000 square feet, far larger than necessary, Christenson said, and costs about $500,000 in monthly bills and upkeep.
"We're trying to be creative and fiscally prudent," Christenson said.
The 200 Exchange St. proposal calls for a five-year lease, enough time for the city to either find a location to build a new city hall, or decide that the location is suitable long-term and renew the lease, Christenson said.
The proposal is one of two the city considers viable, Christenson said. The other, submitted by developer Combined Properties, calls for the construction of a new, 30,000 square foot city hall at the corner of Ferry and Centre streets. A third proposal, submitted by James Vazza, offered about 10,000 square feet of office space at 6 Pleasant St.
Financial figures have not been released on the proposals, but Christenson said previous estimates pegged construction of a new city hall at $15 million.
A panel appointed by Christenson to review the proposals is expected to offer a recommendation by January. It includes City Councilors Greg Lucey and Jim Nestor; Kevin Duffy, the city's strategic and business development officer; and Debbie Burke and Steve Wishoski of the Malden Redevelopment Authority.
City of Malden