Liberty Township: Administrative offices moving to Liberty Park on Home Road

Jim Fischer
ThisWeek

Liberty Township is moving.

Of course, the 33-square-mile, 30,000-plus-population township isn’t actually moving, but its administrative offices are.

Liberty Township sign, as shown March 21, 2020.

The township’s lease on office space on Brewster Lane, off Sawmill Parkway near Fire Station 322, ends at the end of February. With the rent expected to be raised under a new lease, township trustees opted to relocate from the space, which has housed the township offices for the past 15 years.

The administrative and zoning offices will be in a modular complex in Liberty Park, 2507 Home Road. The fiscal office already has moved to Station 322, 10150 Sawmill Parkway.

Township administrator Mike Schuiling said the arrangement, to which the township has committed for two years, will both save money and allow the township to fully assess the relative value of constructing or purchasing a building as a permanent solution to housing the township offices.

“We’ve hit a point where we need to determine what’s most beneficial both short and long term,” Schuiling said. “While we go through that process, we’ll utilize the modular space at the park.”

Schuiling said the current rent for the township’s offices was $54,000 annually and that he expected that figure to rise to about $66,000 in the first year of a new lease, ultimately topping $71,000 in the third year of a new lease.

Instead, he said, the township will rent modular structures, installed next to the maintenance building at Liberty Park, for $2,828 monthly, which is about $34,000 a year.

Determining a course of action regarding township offices is part of an overall facilities assessment undertaken by the township.

“We’ve wrapped up the existing conditions report (on all township facilities), and we’re working now with our architects to look at rehabilitation and maintenance and also asking what if we replaced (some structures),” trustee Bryan Newell said.

“It’s clear to us that there are a lot of our buildings that need a lot of love,” trustee Shyra Eichhorn said. “We’ll be looking at the most effective and most cost-efficient ways to move forward.”

Schuiling said the township had shopped around for rental spaces in the township but determined this approach best allowed the township to determine its long-term plan.

“We’re looking at every possible option. We have two years. We’re very motivated,” he said.

The administrative and zoning offices will move to the new site on Feb. 18. Offices will be closed to in-person visits Feb. 18-23. Staff still will be accessible by phone and email during the closure.

All zoning permits and fees may be submitted electronically through the township website: libertytwp.org.

Trustees will continue to hold public meetings at the township hall/Fire Station 321, 7761 Liberty Road.

Schuiling said the township would like to have offices that also house its meeting space.

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