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In February of 2006, the City Council approved a proposal for construction on the new Civic Center Plaza. Five years were put into the planning of the new civic site, incorporating an outdoor plaza anchored by the modern, two-story City Hall. The Civic Center Plaza was constructed in the same location as the original City Hall building, which was torn down in 1987.

The new City Hall building is equipped with a spacious lobby designed to better serve visitors, new City Council Chambers, a second-floor gallery highlighting local artwork and a room dedicated to the history of El Cerrito. The surrounding plaza is characterized by open public spaces, distinct design elements created to illustrate the city’s heritage and a veteran’s memorial garden. The plaza links City Hall and the Public Safety building located across the street.

The new City Hall was designed to withstand earthquakes and storms, and most importantly, was built as a “green building.” The choice to build a “green” City Hall was a significant aspect of the plan. In the spring of 2009 the project will undergo a process for certification as a LEED building.

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