City step closer to negotiations with state over Sears property

by Brandon Richards bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC-TV) – The Lake Charles Downtown Development Authority approved two resolutions requesting the city council to enter into negotiations with the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeals about the court possibly relocating its building to the old Sears property.

If the court were to relocate, the city would have to sell a portion of the land to the state. The state would then be solely responsible for the planning and construction of the building.

And while the city wouldn't have to pay a dime for the new building (it would actually make money by selling it), taxpayers would still likely be responsible for part of the tab through the state.

Some have also questioned whether the Third Circuit even needs a new building. Its current building was constructed in 1990, just twenty years ago.

Others also would like the space to be used strictly for retail purposes.

In addition to passing the resolution asking the city council to support negotiations with the state, the Downtown Development Authority also passed a resolution recommending the city entertain proposal from retail groups interested in possibly sharing part of the Sears property with the court.

In early March, plans to bring a hotel to the site were scraped.

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