Birmingham City Hall

From Bhamwiki
Jump to: navigation, search
For earlier city halls, see Birmingham City Hall (disambiguation)
Birmingham City Hall from Linn Park. January 2007

The Birmingham City Hall is the primary governmental office building for the city of Birmingham. The 12-story modern-style building faces Linn Park from across 20th Street North between Park Place and 8th Avenue North.

The project for a new City Hall was led by then-Birmingham City Commission president Cooper Green. The choice of whether to rebuild on the same 4th Avenue North site as the 1901 Birmingham City Hall or to move city government to the "Municipal Plaza" was made the subject of a November 7, 1944 referendum.

The building was constructed in 1950 for $3,850,000, which was paid for before the building opened without a bond issue or raising new taxes. The building, which complements the 1932 Jefferson County Courthouse opposite the park, is accented by contrasting vertical bands of limestone and granite. The architect was Charles McCauley and the builder was J. A. Jones Construction Co..

The cornerstone was laid at an August 3, 1950 dedication ceremony, shortly before the project was completed. Governor Jim Folsom, Sr attended and statements were given by Francis McCormack of St Anthony's Catholic Church, Abraham Mesch of Temple Beth-El, and John Googame, Jr of 6th Avenue Baptist Church. David A. Lawrence, the Mayor of Pittsburgh and President of the U. S. Conference of Mayors, gave the dedication address. Hill Ferguson of the Birmingham Historical Society placed the cornerstone time capsule, to be opened in 2050. The cornerstones of the previous City Halls were incorporated into a sculpture for the south entrance.

The "Design for Progress" model of Birmingham was converted into an interactive exhibit for City Hall's lobby in the 1970s, with push-buttons around the perimeter activating small indicator lights at the locations of various landmarks and attractions.

The City Council chambers were refitted in November 2005 in order to accommodate the needs of then-newly-elected Councilor Miriam Witherspoon, who used a wheelchair. Between 2009 and early 2011 work was completed to remove the entrance steps on the West 20th Street side of the building and replace them with new street level handicap accessible entrances. Previously handicapped persons had to use the annex entrance, which was usually locked.

Rooms

In the 1964 city directory, City Hall offices were distributed as follows:

References

External links