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HAZEL PARK, MI-The newest proposal for a city hall, one mile from the northern border of Detroit, is a $12-million, three-story building with retail on the bottom level. City manager Joe Young says the plan would help the city build a new hall, while also providing an income-producing property to sustain it.

The city has been trying to build a new city hall for about three years but has lacked capital due to a tight budget and dwindling population.

“Instead of this being a non-tax paying property, it could generate some income to help offset city services,” Young says.

Developer Richard Flaum of Birmingham, MI has proposed a 100,000-sf, three-story facility to be built on the corner of Nine Mile and John R roads, where the current city hall complex sits. At the site now is a two-story building that incorporates the city offices, a courthouse and the police station. A library building also stands on the site.

Flaum has proposed a new building, built over the old facilities, to house the library, police station, city offices and court all on theupper three levels. Retail space could occupy the bottom floors.

The site would also include a parking structure for nearby businesses.

A post office nearby would be torn down and the new facility may incorporate the office, or the service may relocate to a new facility on John R Road.

The plan would make the hall the only civic facility in Oakland County to include commercial uses.

Young says the proposal, which was made at a recent meeting, does not yet require any action. The city would still have to come up with some way of raising the necessary development funds, he says.

“It’s just a dollars and cents question at this point. We’re looking at our finance people to get creative. I don’t suspect anything will happen on this for at least a year,” Young adds.

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