Proposals for the fate of three State buildings

The Docking State Office Building, scheduled to be demolished starting in 2015.
The Docking State Office Building, scheduled to be demolished starting in 2015.

State officials are starting a conversation about the fate of several state buildings in downtown Topeka.

Shawnee County Delegation heard proposals Thursday afternoon for the fate of three state buildings. It has been proposed that one of them, the Docking building, be demolished. But no decisions have been made yet, the meeting was all just about listening.

“I think it’s important and we’re more than willing to discuss why we’re taking this position particularly on Docking at this time,” said Jim Clark, the Secretary for the Department of Administration.
The Department of Administration proposed Thursday afternoon that a building that has been around since 1955, could be demolished.
“I think the option for docking is basically to tear down,” said Annie Kuether, Chair, Shawnee County Delegation.
The proposal says the cost to fix docking is double the price of just tearing it down. The meeting with the Shawnee County Delegation Thursday, also discussed the possibility of selling the Landon and Dwight D. Eisenhower State Buildings. And on the heels of the renovation of the Statehouse, concern for where government employees would go is a main point.
“We’ve spent the time and money to renovate this gorgeous building, it’s the people, the state employees that serve the people of Kansas, and it’s important for us to have them here and accessible,” said Kuether.
Jim Clark, the secretary for the Department of Administration stressed that they want to keep government employees downtown and close to the Capitol building. But, before any decisions can be made, communication between all involved needs to happen.
“Make sure that the city and the county are on board knowing what’s going on and aware of the fact, just make everybody informed,” said Kuether.
No decisions have been made yet.
The Department of Administration will present their final proposals to a Joint Committee on State Building Construction Thursday, January 16.
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