COPPERAS COVE — Several city departments are preparing to move to new facilities six months after relocating to rental properties on Third Street and Avenue D.
The move to 914 S. Main St. is expected around April 1, City Manager Andrea Gardner said. “As soon as I get for-sure dates, we will put out notices for residents.”
Presently, there are no fiberoptics cables running to the building that allow for Internet and phone services, Gardner said. Once those cables are installed, departments can start relocating to the nearly 8,300-square-foot office complex, which the city paid about $663,000 to purchase.
Public works crews started running the cable earlier this month and are expected to finish the nearly $7,000 job at the end of the month, she said.
Human resources, the city manager’s office, finance, building and development, code compliance and the city secretary’s office will move to the new facility.
Building development is welcoming the second move, said Mike Morton, chief building official. The department was transferred to 1601 N. First St. from Third Street when several other city offices vacated City Hall at 507 S. Main St.
“It is better for the citizens that we are moving back into town,” Morton said, noting the present location was a drive for some residents.
About 20 to 45 people visit the building department daily to receive or ask questions about city permits, he said. Despite several permitting options being online, this move will help residents the most.
Gardner said having several of the administrative offices located on the same property will improve communication and operations between departments. It reduces travel for administrators and area residents, creating less interruptions during the work day.
“It is probably the closest we will get to a non-stop shop (for government) in Copperas Cove,” Gardner said.
The purchase of the new facility was approved by the Copperas Cove City Council in January, just months after the governing body signed a five-year lease for the two office buildings currently used at $4,500 per month.
Gardner said there were clauses in the contract that would let the city break the lease agreement, but the city is working to locate other office-type tenants for the facilities.
While the new offices will house several departments in one spot, the city will continue to work on a plan to construct a facility for more city departments and other local government agencies.
Gardner said construction of such a facility is likely more than 10 years away.