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Frankfort Council Slows Mayor's Accelerated Push To Revamp Old Stoney

Jimmy Emerson

The Frankfort City Council has rejected an ordinance that would have paid for detailed drawings of potential renovations in Old Stoney, the city hall building.

The request for additional funding for the architectural drawings was pushed by the Frankfort Board of Works and Mayor Chris McBarnes, who says he and the board have been “aggressive” in their approach to the restoration of Old Stoney.

McBarnes estimates the renovation would cost nearly $5 million and fears a delay in the project, however small, could drive up the overall cost and potentially stall the renovation for longer than expected.

“In essence, the council supports the project, but they feel as though that more due diligence needs to be done on their side," McBarnes says. "I am disappointed because when big projects like this get bogged down in local government, sometimes they stall and never happen and with Old Stoney, I don’t want to see that happen.”

The council voted the ordinance down 4-3.

Councilman Sam Paul argues the total cost cannot be determined yet, but believes the building needs to be restored. He agrees with the mayor’s decision to speed up the project.

“That was not the original decision because at the meeting they told me that they would not -- or they told the group that they would not -- hold up the actual starting of this remodeling, but it changed," Paul says. "They’ve held up the whole thing.”

The council cannot take further action until an assessment report for Old Stoney is delivered early next year.