The town hall’s air conditioning system turns off; chiller rental at the moment

Another city-owned building is plagued by a failing HVAC system: this time it’s City Hall.

The Jackson City Council took care of the paperwork at its Nov. 8 meeting for the portable cooler, which Ashby Foote, who represents Ward 1 and is council president, said had been in place for about three weeks.

The council authorized an emergency rental agreement with Universal Services to place a portable cooler in the parking lot west of City Hall. One or more components of the existing HVAC system at City Hall has failed.

“How long before we get it fixed permanently at City Hall?” asked Kenneth Stokes, who represents Ward 3.

“The time to get the permanent unit is quite long,” replied Jackson Mayor Choke Antar Lumumba. “It’s a timing chain problem.”

Stokes asked if it was time for a new town hall to replace the current one which dates from 1846, but got no real answer. “A few years ago when Kane Ditto was mayor, they had a discussion with the city and the county about building a new building,” he said.

The chiller cost $23,300 to rent the first month plus $3,500 one-time shipping and $6,800 for installation. After that, the monthly fee is $13,000.

The mayor invoked an emergency procurement process due to “the risk to human health and inefficiencies caused by employees having to leave work early due to temperatures inside the hotel. town”.

The Mississippi Arts Center at 201 E. Pascagoula Street ran out of air conditioning for a year before a new system could be installed in the city-owned building. Supply chain issues were among the reasons for the delay.

After installing a new air conditioning system at the Arts Centre, the building was freezing for some tenants and hot for others, and the Public Works Department had to order a boiler and controls for the system.

The Eudora Welty Library in downtown Jackson, which is owned by the City of Jackson, is also plagued with HVAC issues. It closed for 48 days earlier this year because it was too hot inside to use the building.

Foote has repeatedly said the city needs to better maintain the buildings it owns rather than consider buying new ones to replace them.