Miami Gardens / Opa-locka

Miami Gardens

Miami Gardens City Hall could be ready by April

Miami Gardens leaders and employees may be able to move into their new City Hall complex by April.

That was the latest update from Skanska, the project’s construction contractor, at a City Council meeting Wednesday night. The representatives said they expect to be completed with phase two of the project, including the new City Hall and council chambers, by April 25. The new police headquarters, and the entire project, are expected to be completed by Dec. 1.

The complex broke ground in July 2012 and was expected to be completed by the end of 2013, but the project faced numerous delays because of construction issues and disagreements between the city, constructors and architects.

“We are under contract with the city of Miami Gardens and are working toward getting the city into its new home,” said Pamela Monastra, a Skanska spokeswoman, in an email. “We continue to work in partnership with the city and are here to meet the city’s needs, ensuring that the highest quality and value are delivered.”

Also on Wednesday:

• City Manager Cameron Benson said that the city’s plans for circulator bus service in the city was approved by the county and they plan to send out a request for proposals for outside contractors to handle the project.

A report from the Corradino Group estimated that the program’s capital costs would be about $962,000 for two vehicles, plus signs and shelters. Operating cost estimates would total about $394,000 based on the group’s recommendations.

Money for the bus project would come from the city’s share of Miami-Dade’s half-penny sales tax for transportation.

• Mayor Oliver Gilbert said the city will also be mailing out information on its proposed $50 million General Obligation Bond issue by the end of March with plans to propose it to residents April 21.

The bond has been in the planning stages for nearly a year and, Gilbert told the Miami Herald last year, the average cost for a home valued at $75,000 would be about $5 of debt service in the first year and then another $56 divided over the remaining 20 years of the bond.

The money would be used to upgrade the city’s parks and pools and go toward building a senior center and other capital improvement projects.

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