Monday, March 20, 2023

Oxford Aldermen Select Contractor to Demolish Old RSVP Building for New Park

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor

The RSVP plaza next to City Hall will soon be demolished to make room for a new pocket park. Photo via Google

A new park next to Oxford City Hall is one step closer to becoming a reality after the Oxford Board of Aldermen approved a bid to demolish the old RSVP building.

The Board met in a special meeting Tuesday to review three bids from contractors to demolish the building that was constructed in the mid-1970s.

The three bids ranged from $46,850 to $85,000.

The city must select the “lowest and best bid.”

That bid, at $46,850, came from J.E. Shurden Construction. The Board approved the bid unanimously.

The building is “underground” and the roof is often used as a stage or gathering place. However, the roof leaked and caused permanent damage. The Board felt the space would be better utilized as a gathering place and a gateway from the parking lot behind City Hall into the Downtown Square.

The park will provide 7,460-square feet of green space that will include tables, chairs, a sitting wall, water features, a small stage and low-voltage night lighting.

The large City Hall chiller will be relocated, as well as the time capsule that is buried behind the building that will be demolished.

“Our bid has come in a lot lower than expected,” said Mayor Robyn Tannehill. “We have not seen that in a long time so we are very excited.”

Special Project Director Mark Levy said the contractor is ready to move forward once the bonds are in place to begin the demolition.

Conceptual design for the new pocket park next to City Hall.