The public will have a chance to look through the new Gore District Council offices before staff move in.
There will be an open day this Friday (29 January) from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. The Council will welcome its first customers into the new building on Wednesday 3 February.
Gore District Mayor Tracy Hicks said the redevelopment had transformed the original office building. Built in the 1960s by the Gore Borough Council, the two storey building had very little done to it over the years, apart from the new Council chamber and foyer added in 1994.
“We now have a building that will meet the expectations of today’s customers and provide the technology and space for staff to work more effectively.”
Mr Hicks said the Council was very pleased with the transformation and wanted to share it with residents.
“This has been a significant project for our community and I’m sure there’s quite a few people curious about what our project team has delivered.”
Construction has taken 12 months, which is about six week longer than expected courtesy of last year’s COVID-19 restrictions.
Chief executive Stephen Parry said COVID-19 had been one of the biggest challenges, causing supply chain issues for specialist materials.
“The weather caused a few hold ups as well, as can happen with any building project.”
The new building is 210m² larger than the original offices and will accommodate 45 staff over two floors.
There are seven meeting rooms, five for staff/public use, and two interview rooms in the foyer. The foyer also features two kiosks where customers will be able to access the Council’s online services.
Some of the features of the building include audio visual systems in all the meeting rooms, air conditioning and new ergonomic furniture.
Mr Parry said the forecast final cost was $6.02 million, which was about $20,000 over budget. The project will be funded by loan. The cost to ratepayers is currently 77cents per ratepayer a year.
“As with any major renovation project there are some unforeseen items absorbed into the budget.
However, there have been a few genuine extras we’ve requested, such as duress alarms for staff safety and technology for the Chambers.”
The rebuild has involved nine local contractors or businesses. Ajax Builders has carried out the building component of the contract, while other Gore companies have delivered work in such as areas as decorating, timber joinery and roofing.
The project has been managed by Signal Management Group, a Dunedin-based company the Council has had a long relationship with going back to the construction of the Gore Aquatic Centre.
The building will be officially opened in March.