Ad Spot

New Wilmore City Hall may open next week


Wilmore’s city government has long been crowded into a small two-story building on Main Street near the railroad tracks. But soon, city workers will have more elbow room.

City Hall is moving to what has been a school building on Lexington Avenue for nearly a century.

“It’s almost ten times the size,” Mayor Harold Rainwater said, comparing the new 56,000-square-foot municipal building to the old one.

Besides the city offices and a council chambers, the building has a gymnasium that has been booked almost every night this summer, a stage for dramatic and musical performances, an assembly room, a kitchen and cafeteria an outdoor pavilion and outdoor recreational facilities and plenty of green space.

And the city got it for a song. 

Rainwater said the city government paid $250,000 for the property and will probably put another $50,000 into it.

“It’s going to to provide a lot for the community,” Vince Lewellen, the city’s public works supervisor and cemetery sexton, said.

Amy Fitch, the parks and recreation director, who had already moved in last week, was thrilled about the possibilities. She said it will be used for city and church volleyball and basketball leagues this winter.

The mayor said the gym alone is worth the purchase price.

The oldest part of the building, constructed in 1930, will become the new home of the Wilmore Police Department in about a month, and the newer brick section, constructed in 1962, will be used by the offices now in the old City Hall and the Fire Department.

The mayor said the move should happen by next week.

The Jessamine County Clerk’s Office will also have an office in the building, and there are negotiations between the city government and the Jessamine County Public Library to eventually open a Wilmore branch of the library in the 3,600-square-foot basement of the building, which is handicapped accessible from the back.

There will be more than 150 parking spaces in front and back together.

If the old part of the new City Hall resembles the old City Hall, it’s no coincidence. Both are built with the same cut stone, and Rainwater said it’s his understanding that the same firm built both.

That part of the building was the old Wilmore High School. The campus was later home to Wilmore Elementary School, then the Jessamine Early Learning Village and most recently, The Providence School, an alternative high school.

The building is in good shape because it has been continuously in use, the mayor said. It has a 10-year-old roof, and parts of the HVAC system are fairly new. It mostly just needed some paint.

“I think people are excited about it,” Rainwater said. “A lot of us went to school there,” and so did their children and grandchildren, so “it’s pretty meaningful for us.”

The new building should be open to the public next week, and there may be a “soft opening,” such as a Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting, but there probably won’t be a large-scale event in the near future because of the coronavirus.

The mayor said the city wants to sell its old building to a business and put it back on the tax rolls.

The Wilmore Fire Department will keep its building on Linden Street for its trucks, but will have a training room and offices in the new City Hall.

“It’s a good deal for our little town,” the mayor said.

About Randy Patrick

Randy Patrick is a reporter for Bluegrass Newsmedia, which includes The Jessamine Journal. He may be reached at 859-759-0015 or by email at randy.patrick@bluegrassnewsmedia.com.

email author More by Randy

COVID-19

Jessamine schools returning to mostly online learning because of coronavirus

COVID-19

Thomson-Hood residents die of COVID-19

News

Asbury University to host virtual commencement for Class of 2020

Jessamine County

Local Blue Walk to support police

News

City approves $40.7M bond issue for police station, sewer expansion

Jessamine County

Transportation Cabinet seeking public input for Jessamine-Fayette Connectivity Study

Jessamine County

Judicial center board starts meetings, decisions

Jessamine County

Rock Fence concerts continue Friday

Jessamine County

At the library for Oct. 15, 2020

Public Records

Police and fire reports for Oct. 15, 2020

DEVELOPING NEWS

One dead after early morning shooting

News

Police and fire reports for Oct. 14, 2020

News

Meyer named new state parks commissioner

Jessamine County

Concerts resume at Rock Fence Park

COVID-19

Kentucky has record-breaking COVID week; Jessamine has second-highest week for new cases

Jessamine County

PHOTOS: Chamber has ribbon cuttings

Breaking News

Virus outbreak hits veterans home, two residents have died

Jessamine County

Nicholasville Fire names new captain, lieutenants

Jessamine County

Bewley first female lieutenant of NFD

Jessamine County

Fiscal Court approves lower tax rate in second vote

Jessamine County

Nicholasville man charged with ID theft, fraudulent purchases

Jessamine County

Voters must apply for mail-in ballots by Friday

Jessamine County

Meetings to start for new judicial center

Jessamine County

Vehicle registration grace period ends