What was supposed to be a “free” building owned by the U. S. Government, but operated and maintained jointly by the City of Ruston and the Lincoln Parish Police Jury will wind up costing Ruston’s taxpayers $236 thousand, not including renovations, the Ruston City Council was told last night.
The Ruston Federal Building, located at 201 North Trenton, was once the Ruston Post Office, and also has housed various local, state, and federal offices since its construction in the early 1900’s. In 1992, the building and land was deeded to the city and the jury, with the provision that it be used for certain governmental purposes.
Last year, the jury relinquished its claim to the building and property.
Earlier this year, Mayor Ronny Walker said that plans for the building included an arts center. As that usage was not contemplated by the 1992 agreement, ownership would revert to the Government Services Administration (GSA).
Walker told the council that the building and property appraised for $236 thousand. That price was agreeable to the GSA and would release any obligations on future use of the building, Walker said.
The council passed the resolution unanimously. It is unclear how much in renovations will be needed to bring the building up to modern standards, or what the cost will be.
See here the resolution.
In other city property news, negotiations are underway between the city and Weyerhaeuser Company to purchase about an acre of city owned land at the corner of Jefferson Avenue and US 167.
Weyerhaeuser had been looking at area property on which to construct an office building, local real estate sources have said.