Texas Township considering additional locations for new offices

Kalamazoo County

TEXAS TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Texas Township is looking for more places to consider for its new township hall after a plan to use a section of a popular park faced criticism.

The township board approved a plan Monday night to request proposals for land in the Downtown Development Authority area surrounding Texas Corners.

Julie VanderWiere, the township superintendent, says the current township hall and property are not big enough to meet the needs of the growing community.

“We’re on our third addition, third renovation of this township hall and it just can’t be renovated anymore,” VanderWiere said.

The township board is still considering using a portion of Texas Drive Park.

“The park itself is about 17 acres, this would use about three acres of that in the corner,” VanderWiere said.

After residents voiced concerns about losing green space in the park, the township sent out a survey.

“About 48% of the people that responded to the survey said that it was OK for us to put it at the park,” VanderWiere said.

Approximately 36% said they did not want the township hall to use the park land but wanted the hall to be built in the DDA area.

The township already owns the park land, and the option remains under consideration because of the potential cost savings.

“Property within our downtown district here ranges anywhere from $90,000 to $100,000 an acre, so if we need three to four acres, two to four acres, that’s $400,000 that we would not have had to spend on the project,” VanderWiere said.

The township had put the plan on hold because of emergency projects needed to address flooding in the area.

“We had hoped we would start construction this fall, but that’s not going to happen, so we need to determine the location and then we’ll be able to move on. And so, the hope is that we could potentially start constructing next year,” VanderWiere said.

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