Five Shawnee Co. agencies set to vacate courthouse next month
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Shawnee Co. Commission, along with several other county agencies will do business from a new location before the end of this year.
Shawnee Co. purchased the building at 707 Quincy St. for $750,000 in 2021. By October, Shawnee Co. Board Commissioners, along with the Shawnee Co. Human Resources, IT, Audit Finance and Legal will take up residence by October 2022.
According to Amanda Monhollon, the Public Information Officer for Shawnee Co., the SPARK (Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas) committee approved the funding for the relocation through Shawnee County’s ARPA Funds, which means that no additional taxpayer dollars will be asked to go towards the relocation. ARPA stands for the American Rescue Plan Act, which is the relief funds offered by the Biden Administration to help the economy of the Americans and each state following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monhollon said that one positive aspect to moving the 5 departments is to offer the District Attorney and two new magistrate judges more space.
“We are currently in the process of all the preliminary move in dates, however, we are also really excited that we will also be able to give more space to our courts and our D.A., said Monhollon. “It is also going to be a great opportunity for our community and our taxpayers. It is going to give a lot more space for our individuals that want to come into the building.”
“It is going to be anywhere from 75 to 100 new seating for all of our directors and our community when they want to come in to attend a meeting and also this is going to allow better space for our commissioners, and our counselor, and our county clerks to be at the main table,” according to Monhollon.
While some offices are moving out of the courthouse, several will be staying.
“There are going to be some that are still going to stay over there, specifically, the county clerk’s office, our treasurer’s office, our facilities management, and our emergency management will be staying over at the courthouse,” Monhollon told 13 NEWS.
The building is over 100 years old and once housed multiple businesses and organizations. The building was first completed back in 1911, which was at the time called the Wilson Blaine Kirkpatrick building; at the time it housed commercial businesses and even the Topeka Chamber of Commerce.
From 1931 to 1942, the Egyptian Gardens Dance Hall was on the 3rd floor. Then from 1945 to 1974, the Capitol Post No. 1 American Legion on the 1st floor, along with the Topeka Recreation Company on the 2nd floor, was added.
By 1974, the building was remodeled for about $500,000 for the NeKan Bell Credit Union, which later changed its name to the New Century Credit Union from 1996 to 2013.
From 2015 to 2017, the Botegga Art Gallery was added into the office building with the Credit Union. Since then, several law offices, Kaitlin’s Kloset, and 707 Maximus moved into the office building up until 2021.
County officials intend to have ribbon cutting to celebrate once the moving process is complete. The details of the ceremony will be released at a later date.
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