For sale or lease: Spacious, 29,000 square-foot municipal building on 30 acres in the heart of North Las Vegas’ downtown redevelopment district. Food and transportation adjacent. Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant and air conditioned, with high ceilings, wide hallways and a glass-enclosed atrium.
Flexible owner needs cash quick, seeks small- to mid-sized private, government or nonprofit tenant willing to take on a few minor tech-related retrofits.
No reasonable offers refused.
If there was a ‘for sale’ sign out front of North Las Vegas’ old City Hall, that might be how it would read.
All that’s missing, of course, is a list price.
Putting a dollar figure on the city’s mothballed former headquarters has proven tricky in the more than two years since city employees moved to a glimmering, $130 million new headquarters up the street.
Not least because city officials aren’t sure they want to sell.
The Clark County Assessor recently appraised the decades-old property at $3.1 million — enough to make a noticeable dent in North Las Vegas’ projected $18 million budget shortfall for fiscal year 2015.
But officials say they would rather give up a little cash now to line up a tenant willing to sign a long-term lease that would allow the city to bond against the building until a better economic climate would make for a more profitable sale.
Economic Development Administrator Terri Sheridan said she hopes to land just such a tenant “within the next 12 months.”
“I think it fills a void for downtown office space that isn’t really available,” she said.
“This much office space just doesn’t exist in a lot of places.”
City officials say several corporate and governmental entities have expressed interest in buying or leasing the building.
Sheridan, who cited ongoing negotiations in declining to identify or comment on those suitors, said city leaders have made every attempt to keep up the building’s curb appeal, starting with the green, close-cropped grass outside its main entrance.
Inside, things are just as well-maintained. The lights switch on and the toilets flush.
The council chamber’s clock runs nine minutes slow, but its closed-circuit cameras remain mounted, in near-working order.
City maintenance workers have kept the linoleum floors and faux-marble office walls spotless. The few weeds that have escaped their attention in the atrium aren’t nearly tall enough to ride a roller coaster.
The building also features several amenities Sheridan said could prove attractive to tenants in the health care and technology sector, including fully-wired conference rooms, a kitchen and capacious basement storage.
There’s even a room-sized bank vault. It’s empty.
City Finance Director Darren Adair guessed the city spends a couple thousand dollars a month on landscape and maintenance at the mothballed facility — a small investment that could reap huge returns if cash-strapped officials can lure a major corporate presence downtown.
“We don’t have a whole lot of cash to offer as incentives or tenant improvements,” Adair said, “but if the drone industry or some other major player came to town and we could lock them up, we would be as aggressive we could.”
The last humans to step foot inside the city’s old nerve center were filming “Think Like A Man Too,” a Martin Lawrence comedy set for release in late June. For several weeks last summer the 40-member film crew used part of the shuttered City Hall for a jailhouse scene, which probably says more for the building’s utility than its beauty. The lockup scene is part of the film’s trailer, and can be seen at: https://www.youtube.com /watch?v=N8b6kVSZNLE.
City spokeswoman Chrissie Coon said the filmmakers came away impressed with the location’s upkeep.
But she acknowledged more long-term tenants would probably want to Spackle the pockmarked walls and surely would need to call in an asbestos removal team to move any walls.
It might not be the prettiest building ever erected — and it will always sit in the towering shadow of new, “Grade A” City Hall office space reportedly being eyed by officials with the Las Vegas Metro Chamber of Commerce and the College of Southern Nevada — but Coon said she can’t think of a municipal building with more potential.
“I think the best way to look at this piece of property is as an asset,” she said. “We don’t want it to lose value by sitting here.
“If you get a tenant in here that’s invested in trying to build the city up with us, it just snowballs and can be a real catalyst for development.”
Contact reporter James DeHaven at 702-477-3839 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @JamesDeHaven.