Where there’s a mill, there’s a way — and a groovy new home for a public works operations center.
At least that’s how the City of Centennial looked at it when it purchased the former BMC West Building Materials mill last year for $2.75 million in cash.
Located at 7272 S. Eagle St. in Centennial, the spacious 9-acre property will house the city’s public works department and has plenty of space to accommodate other functions in the future.
Three buildings exist on the site, totaling close to 38,000 square feet.
“The main building has 14,000 square feet of usable office space, and the warehouse has close to 12,500 square feet,” Deputy Director of Public Works Mike Conner explained. “Plus, there’s 6-acre concrete yard and an 11,000-square-foot shelter, and that’s where we plan on parking our snowplows.”
Centennial City Manager John Danielson said the purchase could not have come at a better time, particularly when it comes to real estate.
“We think we’ve already made money on it,” Danielson said. “Public works, the traffic operations center — all those operations can be centralized there, and that provides efficiency and significant cost savings to the city.”
Empty since September 2009, the property is in excellent condition and is already being used by the city for storage of its assets, such as electronic signage.
“Truly, this property is about opportunity and investment,” said Conner.
Danielson said it will also open doors to additional partnerships and revenue opportunities such as leasing office space while managing long-term costs.
City spokeswoman Allison Wittern said that should funding permit, Centennial hopes to also have a community room on the property.
According to the city, the $2.75 million purchase price is a bargain, considering initial estimates for a comparable facility begin at $6 million.
“And it’s ours,” added Wittern. “No debt.”
Conner said he expects renovations to begin sometime soon.
“In a perfect world, it would be nice to be in here by the end of the year,” he said. “But we’ll have to see how things go.”