ST. CLOUD -- The vision of turning the old Tech High School into the new City Hall has taken a step forward.

During Monday night's meeting, the St. Cloud city council approved a resolution authorizing the mayor to officially acquire the building from the St. Cloud Area School District.

The council also approved spending up to $700,000 on architectural services with JLG and HMA, and up to $400,000 on construction services with RA Morton.

Council Member Dave Masters says the residents that he's talked to like the plan.

It's my ward over there and I have heard from residents who are excited about that process as well and would like to see that go forward.

Councilmember George Hontos was the lone "no" vote on the project. He says he's neither for or against it but wishes the council would have been more involved in developing the plans.

I really feel like the train has left the station and I'm standing on the platform wondering what's going on here.

Mayor Dave Kleis says it is estimated it will cost between $6 million and $9 million to renovate the 1917 and 1938 buildings as well as demolish the rest of the Tech building. He says the maintenance cost for the current city hall building is estimated at $5 million over the next 15 years. Proceeds from the sale of the current city hall and the former district media services building would also be used.

The renovated Tech would nearly triple the space for city staff, providing more storage space and the ability to expand.

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Kleis says the goal is for city staff to move into the building by next summer.

Future steps in the process include entering into a contract with Inventure Properties to sell the current city hall building and parking lot.

The city will also be going out for a Request for Proposals to sell the former Media Services Building.

The idea of building a hockey facility on the Tech site Kleis calls just a "possibility" and a "proposal" at this point, which would require bonding dollars from the State Legislature.