The city of Colorado Springs will spend $465,000 to overhaul city council chambers in coming months, the city announced April 7.
Work will begin after the April 13 council meeting, located in historic City Hall at Nevada Avenue and Kiowa Street downtown.
Construction will span 18 weeks, with completion projected for late August.
During construction, council chambers won't be available for council, planning commission and Downtown review board meetings, which will be moved to the Colorado Springs Utilities Blue River boardroom on the fifth floor of the Plaza of the Rockies building.
The first meeting will be on April 20 when newly elected councilors take their oath of office.
"During this time, Citizens will still not be allowed to view Council meetings in person but can continue to watch them through SpringsTV and comment at Regular Meetings by calling into the meeting. Due to local public health restrictions, City Hall is still closed to the public until further notice," the city said in a news release.
Renovations include removal and reconstruction of the dais to the south wall, and an overhaul of the broadcast technology. "The current dais is fairly old and outdated and this renovation will also allow us to rebuild with modern broadcast technology built into the dais and chambers," city spokesperson Alex Ryden says in an email.
Construction, minor repairs and electrical upgrades will cost $283,000, he says. Audio and visual improvements will cost $144,000; another $38,000 will be spent for architectural design services.
"This project addresses our obsolete audio & visual system, increases seating spacing of the dais, and improves the functionality of public meetings that were highlighted in the wake of COVID-19," Ryden says.
General fund savings resulting from an allocation to the city from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, carried over from 2020 to 2021, will help fund the project.