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The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

New city hall to be built in San Marcos

Rosey Mendoza
A local community member heads to the door of San Marcos City Hall for assistance, Friday, April 5, 2024, in San Marcos.

The development of a new San Marcos City Hall is underway, intending to increase sustainability and community engagement.

The new city hall is still in the beginning planning stages while the city searches for more staff. Assistant City Manager Laurie Moyer spearheaded the proposal for the new city hall located across the street from the current building on East Hopkins Street.

Moyer said the project will address the current city hall’s unstable condition. The size of the current city hall is the biggest restriction as the population of San Marcos and city staff has increased exponentially since the hall was first built in 1975. The population of San Marcos in 1970 was 18,860 compared to the 2023 record population of 87,111 according to Josh Daspit, an associate professor of management at Texas State.

“[A new city hall has] been discussed for probably several years now. We had really outgrown this particular site,” Moyer said. “Right before COVID-19, you would have seen we were all jam-packed in here.”

According to Moyer the city already owns the land for the new building, which will keep the city hall near other public buildings.

“You [will be able to] see the [new] city hall, our library and then our activity center all on one side of the street with that interconnectivity,” Moyer said.

Although development of the new city hall is underway, Moyer said the pace has been slow due to the current staff shortage. Both Moyer and Administrative Services Director Hayden Migl are actively working on recruiting additional personnel to maintain consistent progress. They also intend to gather public input on future design and planning decisions.

Migl and Moyer said another goal of the new city hall involves reflecting environmental protection by integrating water quality into its design. The exact specifics of how these values will be reflected are to be determined and will be decided through public engagement as progress on the city hall continues.

“We really [want to] highlight some of the efforts we do take to protect the river especially as a gateway [to the community],” Migl said.

According to Mayor Jane Hughson, students and residents can anticipate getting involved with the development through public art potentially displayed within or surrounding the new city hall. This will serve as part of the city’s initiative to involve local artists in more capacity such as their mural art program.

“We’re really becoming an art area,” Hughson said. “We want to make sure the lobby, the area people will come to, is reflective of local art.”

Maxfield Baker, previous councilmember and San Marcos resident, agreed with the need for a new city hall to be built due to outdated infrastructure and sizing constraints. According to Baker, at the current establishment there is not enough space for councilmembers to have an office.

According to Baker, the new city hall could be a great opportunity for a community center. He said a city hall which hosts non-political events could also allow residents to develop an interest in political affairs and share a common space.

“[There could be a] place for a nonprofit fair or even like an indoor market or something that gets people into [the hall] outside of just politics,” Baker said. “If you can put people’s interests about politics adjacent to [non-political] things they’re interested in, then a cross-pollination effect happens.”

Devon Crew

For more information on the development of city hall and city council meetings discussing it, visit the city’s website.

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