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Irvine Sells Its Old City Hall but Won’t Disclose to Whom

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The city has accepted a cash offer of $2.2 million from an unidentified developer for the outdated Multiservice Center.

City officials say the sale, approved by the City Council this week, is a step in the right direction to help recoup potential losses from the city’s $109 million frozen in the county investment pool.

The sale is expected to net $2.1 million for the city.

The Multiservice Center on Jamboree Road and McGaw Avenue is the former home of City Hall and the Irvine Police Department. After building a new City Hall on Harvard and Alton, city officials used the Multiservice Center to provide low-rent offices for about two dozen nonprofit agencies.

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The City Council voted in June to sell the building to cut $65,000 in annual operating losses and to avoid an estimated $500,000 needed for earthquake retrofitting and air conditioner repairs. Most of the nonprofit agencies were moved to the city’s Operations Support Facility.

Because of continuing negotiations over the sale, city officials have declined to name the buyer of the building. But Councilman Greg Smith said the buyer is a developer who plans to refurbish the building and lease it out for office space.

The 40,000-square-foot building was appraised at $4.5 million during the real estate boom of the 1980s. But by July 1993, the appraised value of the building had fallen by nearly 50%. The property was listed with Irvine real estate brokers Lee & Associates for $2.4 million.

“Actually, we did better than we expected,” Smith said.

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