BENSON — The City of Benson is in the process of purchasing a building from a Fort Huachuca contractor that will be used for the city’s different departmental offices.
“This is a fairly new 3,500-square foot building that was used on Fort Huachuca for a short time,” said Benson Public Works Director and City Engineer Brad Hamilton. “We plan to use it for city offices because our current City Hall complex is in such poor condition. Future plans are to demolish the entire city hall complex and relocate into this temporary building until we can rebuild.”
To make way for the building, Benson Public Works crews have excavated a city-owned lot at Sixth and Patagonia streets immediately east of City Hall. On Tuesday, they were back-filling the area with “engineer-fill” to create a solid foundation for the new structure, Hamilton said.
“This is a very nice, solid commercial-grade building, with a sprinkler system, fire alarms and everything required under the building code,” he added. “We’re going to be able to purchase it for $10,000.”
The acquisition’s biggest expense will be moving the structure to its new location, noted Hamilton who expects the building to arrive sometime in August.
It was in 2018 that the city council chambers had to be demolished because one corner of the building sank about 14 inches, Hamilton said.
“It was putting stress on the adjacent office buildings, so the structure was condemned and demolished. We now hold our council meetings at the Community Center.”
When Benson rebuilds its City Hall complex, it will be at the current location.
Meanwhile, dump trucks, backhoes and other heavy equipment are working on the site at Patagonia and Sixth streets in preparation for the building that will be coming to Benson later this summer.
“This building is a good deal for us,” said Benson Mayor Toney King. “It’s a win-win for all concerned. We need a place for our offices while we look at how we’re going to move forward with a new city hall complex, and this building gives us a temporary place until we can rebuild.”