PlanFirst Success Story: Griffin makes $3M improvements to historic city hall

The City of Griffin’s Historic City Hall received its first major facelift since its inception in 1910.  

It was in use up until 2003, only being vacated after the building was found to be steadily deteriorating. 

Its decline continued over the years, officially being designated by the city as a “Place in Peril” in 2014.  

As Griffin set about creating its updated comprehensive plan in 2017, many goal and policy items were included that would ultimately lead to putting the building back in use. 

The $3,750,000 SPLOST investment to preserve and update this historic site is a direct result of a project outlined in the city’s Community Work Program. This is listed in the City of Griffin Comprehensive Plan 2018-2038, “Griffin Growing, Together.” 

The City of Griffin also established Tax Allocation Districts (TADs) to revitalize declining neighborhoods and stimulate reinvestment in underutilized properties.  

TADs are Georgia’s version of tax increment financing. They allow local governments to capture tax revenues attributable to property value increases within prescribed development areas. Those revenues are then used for neighborhood improvements.  

One of Griffin’s TAD districts, the Downtown Griffin TAD, includes the redevelopment of the old City Hall building. 

The improvements made include a general facelift to beautify the building, and the addition of rentable event space as well as offices for Griffin’s Economic Development Department. 

Griffin’s Historic City Hall now stands as a fine example of how laying out a roadmap of policies and plans can help restore and preserve the unique history of a community.