Tryon approves moving offices to make room for museum

Published 10:42 am Thursday, August 22, 2013

Tryon Town Council agreed this week to move its town hall offices to the other side of the building to make room for a museum and visitor’s center.

Council met Tuesday, Aug. 20 and approved moving the town’s offices. Commissioner Roy Miller was the sole vote against the move.

An ad hoc museum committee asked the town to move its current town hall offices so a visitor’s center and museum could be housed in a visible location. Estimates are that moving the offices will cost approximately $10,000, but museum committee chair Happy McCleod said the committee’s plan is for the town not to spend any money beyond the cost of moving its offices. The plan, she said, is for the committee to obtain grants and donations and volunteer labor to renovate the new museum space.

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Tryon Town Manager Joey Davis said council asked him in June to get more specific pricing on what it would cost to move the offices. He said the biggest cost would be replacing the carpet on the other side, which has been there for years and suffered mold issues. Concern over mold is the reason offices moved to the other side of the building in the first place, Davis said.

Replacing the carpet would cost approximately $6,000.

Commissioner George Baker said he wants to hear a compelling argument for spending approximately $10,000 to relocate the offices.

Davis said other than getting a museum and visitor’s center the space would flow better if the offices moved. He said currently the biggest issue is that the clerk’s office is a pass through office.

“If you tell us you want us to move, we’ll gladly move,” David said. “If you tell us you want us to stay, we’ll stay.”

McCleod said on April 16 the proposal was that the town, the Tryon Downtown Development Association (TDDA) and the Tryon Tourism Development Authority (TTDA) would jointly create the museum for the town. The town was asked to provide the space, she said, with the TDDA and TTDA in charge of writing grants to pay for the costs of renovation.

“There is no money now, but there will be,” said McCleod.

She said the plan is for the town not to have any expense other than to move its offices.