Officials decided to use property the city of Conway already owns for the location of its new City Hall.
The city chose the parking lot along Parkway Street between Main and Prairie streets in the center of downtown Conway. Because it is currently just a parking lot with no building, it doesn't yet have a physical address.
Chief of Staff Jack Bell said that after Mayor Bart Castleberry and members of the Conway City Council looked at several options, they decided that location would be the best because of its location in addition to the money it will save. Bell said the city will likely save somewhere in the ballpark of $1 million by using city-owned property rather than buying a new space.
Chief Financial Officer Tyler Winningham said the city has a little more than $6 million to use for the new City Hall.
Jamie Brice, Conway's purchasing manager, will send out requests for proposals (RFPs) to a few dozen architectural firms on Friday.
Bell told the Log Cabin Democrat: "The goal is to have the city council approve an architect in its first meeting in August."
The city signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Conway Corporation where the company will enter a long-term lease (50 years) of the current City Hall for its Arnold Innovation Center for $1.05 million earlier this month. The MOU states city officials have 18 months to relocate.
Bell said Thursday that "it's a little early for" design plans but that the new City Hall could include council chambers where its meetings would be held. The council currently meets in the Judge Jack Roberts District Court Building but has to switch venues if court doesn't end in time, such as it did on Tuesday.