The new Granite Falls City Hall opens to the public on Wednesday. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

The new Granite Falls City Hall opens to the public on Wednesday. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

After a decade of planning, Granite Falls has new City Hall

This project is only the beginning of a revitalized downtown. More work is set to begin in the fall.

GRANITE FALLS — John Spencer, who has lived here for nearly three decades, walks to City Hall every month to pay his water bill.

He’s looking forward to beginning that tradition at the new Granite Falls City Hall — a building with air conditioning, unlike the old one.

“Up there where the city council meetings are now, and the planning commission meetings are now, it’s pretty hot,” he said.

Granite Falls City Manager Brent Kirk addresses the crowd during the opening of City Hall on Tuesday. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

Granite Falls City Manager Brent Kirk addresses the crowd during the opening of City Hall on Tuesday. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

Spencer, who was on the city council for a couple of years in the early 1990s and still attends meetings every so often, was among dozens who gathered Tuesday afternoon for a ribbon cutting ceremony at the new City Hall on South Granite Avenue. It opens to the public 5 p.m. Wednesday. The previous building is just across the street.

Elected officials and those who call Granite Falls home formed a crowd on the new pavement, outside of the dark-stained wooden front doors.

The building was designed to resemble a train station, a nod to the history of the Monte Cristo mining tracks that once ran through town. Repurposed railroad ties decorate a trellis near the entrance.

City Manager Brent Kirk and Mayor Matt Hartman marked the opening by cutting a red ribbon with an oversized pair of scissors. Everyone cheered. It was a big deal for a small town.

Plans for the new City Hall started to form in 2009, and were set in motion a few years ago. At that time, the city bought two houses that used to be on the site. They were demolished to complete the project.

The old space was about 1,600 square feet. Council meetings were held up a flight of 21 stairs. Not everyone could make it there.

Designers made sure the new 7,600-square-foot building is completely accessible.

The previous Granite Falls City Hall is just across the street from the new building on South Granite Avenue. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

The previous Granite Falls City Hall is just across the street from the new building on South Granite Avenue. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

Dark wood accents frame the windows, reception area and city council chambers. All the new furniture came from moving Federal Aviation Administration offices, for a total price of $5,000. That saved about $120,000, Kirk said.

In all, construction costs were $3.9 million. The money came from a 15-year loan and city reserve funds.

On Tuesday, most of the center was still empty. A refrigerator was waiting to be installed in one of the break rooms. Employees haven’t moved in yet, but will soon.

City Council chambers in the new Granite Falls City Hall. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

City Council chambers in the new Granite Falls City Hall. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

More work to revitalize Granite Falls starts in fall.

At that time, the police station is set to be remodeled using a $412,000 grant that came from the state. It’s expected to look similar to the new City Hall.

Officers are expected to move into the former City Hall during construction. Once that’s complete, the American Legion may move into the old city building.

The main reception area of the new Granite Falls City Hall. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

The main reception area of the new Granite Falls City Hall. (Stephanie Davey / The Herald)

The legion’s current dilapidated structure isn’t safe to use anymore. The city plans to someday demolish it, to create an outdoor plaza.

City Hall is just the beginning of an upgraded downtown for everyone to enjoy.

“This is the anchor of it all,” Kirk said.

Stephanie Davey: 425-339-3192; sdavey@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @stephrdavey.

Talk to us

More in Local News

911 received multiple calls reporting a fire at Marie Anne Terrace apartments early Monday morning, Feb. 6, 2023 in Everett, Washington. There were no injuries or fatalities. (Everett Fire Department)
Fire damages Everett apartments, displaces 10

The fire at the Marie Anne Terrace apartments Monday night displaced four families and caused extensive property damage.

A rack with cards bettors can use to choose their own numbers to purchase lottery ticket on a counter at a market. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Been to Auburn lately? That’s where $754M Powerball ticket was sold

This is only the second time a Powerball jackpot has been won in Washington.

Granite Falls
Man shot near Granite Falls; assailants at large

Two suspects fled after shooting a 33-year-old man in a motorhome Tuesday morning, according to police.

Photo by David Welton
A federal grant will help pay for the cost of adding a charging station to the Clinton ferry terminal.
Federal money to help electrify Clinton ferry dock

The Federal Transit Administration awarded state ferries a $4.9 million grant to help electrify the Mukilteo-Clinton route.

Community Transit is leasing a 60-foot articulated BYD battery electric bus this year as an early step in the zero emission planning process. (Community Transit)
Community Transit testing 60-foot electric bus

The agency leased the BYD K11M for $132,000 this year as the first step in its zero-emission planning process.

Angelica Montanari and daughter Makena, 1, outside of the Community Health Center of Snohomish County Everett-Central Clinic on Thursday, Feb. 2, 2023. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Amid patient woes, CHC of Snohomish County staffers push for a union

Doctors and nurse practitioners are worried about providers being shut out from clinical decisions, which hurts patient care.

NO CAPTION. Logo to accompany news of education.
Public school enrollment still down, even as rural districts grow

Smaller districts in Snohomish County seem to be recovering more quickly — and gaining students — than their urban counterparts.

Snohomish home-invasion suspect had been released weeks earlier

Eleazar Cabrera, 33, is accused of breaking into a home and shooting a man three times. He has a lengthy rap sheet.

NO CAPTION NECESSARY: Logo for the Cornfield Report by Jerry Cornfield. 20200112
A holiday for Lunar New Year, a return of green and white license plates

It’s Day 29. Here’s what’s happening in the 2023 session of the Washington Legislature

Most Read