The answer to the questions about whether to build a new city hall and whether to move it can best be determined after a thorough study of departmental interactions and communication needs, user requirements and traffic patterns, existing and projected workload, present and projected staffing patterns and the myriad other details that are part of day-to-day operations.
It is only through this kind of nitty-gritty data gathering and analysis that real staffing, space and departmental requirements can be determined. With this information in hand, it becomes relatively easy to analyze costs and make decisions about relocating or rebuilding, and consolidation or separation. The last step in the process is the decision about whether to build, buy or lease.
Having done this kind of work for many years as a consultant to institutional clients, including the Mayo Clinic and the University of California, I can testify that it is tough, time-consuming and expensive. Employees must be interviewed in depth; workflow must be observed and measured; projections of future needs must be made. Sadly, this is where some of the $625,000 already blown on the civic center project should have first been spent.