I want to begin this article by recognizing our City Commission’s leadership in the making of some tough decisions in these difficult times. The votes have been difficult and sometimes the pressure intense, but there is a wealth of talent, vested interest and experience at the Commission table. By working closely with our Commission members and City Manager we continue to meet the challenges ahead of us.
So, exactly what have we been doing since our City’s inception? We have been implementing an Era of Innovation in several areas. We’ve been fighting crime, improving neighborhoods, growing our economy, seeking means to create jobs, planning for the future and saving money. We’ve been streamlining, modernizing and transforming the way we do business during these tough economic times.
We have also been partnering with our colleagues from other levels of government. There is great benefit in working together across jurisdictional lines at the federal, state, county, and municipal levels that will pay many dividends today and in the future.
Despite challenges, the state of our City remains strong and secure. We remain better off financially than many other cities. All indicators are positive: We have the best prospects to emerge from this recession closer to becoming the West Park of our dreams.
New City Hall Opening
We recently celebrated a great milestone with our official ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony of our City Hall on April 14, 2011, with approximately 300 people in attendance representing county, state, federal, and municipal entities.
It was a grand affair with music, hors d’oeuvres, and a building tour led by the City Manager. The ceremony was a great success thanks to our City Manager and staff for their tireless efforts. There is much to be said about how they maximized minimum dollars during these tough economic times.
Our new City Hall is a renovation of former office space located at 1965 South State Road 7, next to Home Depot.
Many who attended the ceremony commented on the new City Hall’s strategic location, and excellent design; people from neighboring businesses stopped by to see how the space had been transformed into such a wonderful use. In our City’s short history, we are very excited about this important landmark in our community, which represents the heart of West Park!
When reflecting on our incorporation in 2005, we can rejoice for what we see today. For approximately five years, our City was granted use of office space for staff and various functions by the Town of Pembroke Park, for which we are very grateful. We held Commission meetings a mile away at the Carver Ranches Library. However, knowing that the arrangement could not be permanent, we began our efforts to establish a presence for our City.
Let me say at this juncture that no new taxes were needed nor required to fund the approximately 7,000 square foot City Hall and debt was kept to a minimum.
The design of the City Hall is intended to focus on customer service, transparency and accessibility to the entire community. This is an exciting time for all of us with benefits for both residents and staff. This design will not only help us provide services more efficiently, but will provide better access to our community.
Our administrative offices moved and began operations in the new City Hall on April 1, 2011. Feel free to stop by and see another phase in our progress as we continue to make our City a great place to live, work, and play!