VA Lawmakers Expected to Approve Plan to Rebuild GA Building - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

VA Lawmakers Expected to Approve Plan to Rebuild GA Building

Posted: Updated: Mar 11, 2014 05:12 PM

Each year, the General Assembly building in Richmond plays host to state lawmakers, lobbyists, and thousands of others - but lawmakers say the building has become nothing less than a public safety hazard, literally crumbling from the outside in.

Now, they're prepared to do something about it.

For years, lawmakers have talked about tearing the building down due to overwhelming health hazards including asbestos, mold, and the fact that the building is literally falling apart on the outside.

The state pours more than $10 million a year into the languishing landmark.

Some lawmakers fear spending hundreds of millions of dollars to tear down and rebuild would send a bad message to taxpayers – but now, they say enough is enough.

“It would be easy to assume that it is somewhat self-enrichment, but the truth of the matter is it's a public safety issue now,” said 10th District Senator John Watkins (R).

Lawmakers are expected to approve a $300 million, bond-funded plan to rebuild the General Assembly building, and make other capital improvements throughout Capitol Square. That includes the construction of a new parking deck at the corners of Ninth and Broad streets and renovations to the historic Old City Hall building.

Construction would begin in mid-2016 and finish in 2018.

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