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Tour Tomorrow's Municipal Building Annex Today! If, That Is, The City Can Afford It.

By now you're no doubt aware that the old Municipal Building downtown, otherwise known as the ca.-1914 City Hall, is where the University of North Texas hopes to put the UNT Dallas College of Law, which still needs to be funded by the state Legislature in the current session. Right now, UNT plans on enrolling classes for the fall 2012 semester at 1901 Main Street, otherwise known as the Universities Center at Dallas building in the old Joske's.

But what of the Municipal Building Annex, built in 1956? The city council's Public Safety Committee is about to find out. Here's the doc prepared for today's briefing, which outlines the extreme courthouse makeover -- bids for which came in in October 2009 but were tossed because they "exceeded the available funds for the project." A new RFP was put out in September, but since then "city staff has been working with consulting team and contractor to reduce cost," says the briefing, which outlines the to-do's needed to get the asbestos-filled, structurally deficient, ADA-non-complaint and altogether antiquated building back into shape.

The PowerPoint's short on details -- no cost, no time line, only a few maybe-could-be renderings and a laundry list of what the building needs and what it's likely to do without even after the redo. Like: The fifth floor won't even get touched -- it'll remain little more than a shell -- and there won't be a separate elevator for judges or employees. And: The exterior will remain untouched.

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