Dinuba continues to build downtown civic center vision

Charles Dellinger, a project manager with RRM Design Group, presents conceptual design options for a downtown civic center and city hall to the Dinuba City Council June 25, 2024.(Serena Bettis)

Dinuba City Council identifies preferences for downtown city hall, civic center on northwest corner of Fresno and L Street

DINUBA – Looking toward the future, city officials hope to one day center their operations and resident services in downtown Dinuba.

While still a far-off plan, the Dinuba City Council identified a location and general design concept for a future downtown civic center and city hall during a council workshop June 25. As part of the city and council’s long-standing goal of downtown revitalization, Dinuba has been working with RRM Design Group to develop a better idea of what a downtown city hall would look like.

“The goal is by locating city hall downtown, it’s more convenient for the residents to do shopping, pay other bills — because you’ve got PG&E there as well as city hall — so hopefully it’ll encourage more people to walk downtown,” City Manager Luis Patlan said.

Part of the drive to design a city hall concept in the downtown comes from a community survey conducted in 2018 by students from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Assistant City Manager Daniel James said. Through that survey, resident input suggested that building a city hall or city square in downtown would be a good idea to both help businesses and foster community.

Through a general consensus, the council opted for a design concept that places the new city hall on the northwest corner of L Street and Fresno Street with the building angled diagonally so the front entrance faces the corner. This would align the overall design of the city hall with the Dinuba Vocational Center that is on the southwest side of the intersection, as its main entrance is positioned diagonally as well.

The city hall would likely be two stories and provide ample space for city departments as they grow with the population of Dinuba. Patlan said all city departments except police and fire would be housed at the downtown city hall.

The concept design presented by RRM Project Manager Charles Dellinger also included a large parking lot on the west side of the city hall, amble street parking and a civic center and park area located along the north and west sides of the city hall.

The second option presented to the council would have located the city hall on the east side of L Street, spread out over Fresno Street between the Dinuba Chamber of Commerce office building and parking lot and the old theater. The front entrance would have faced L Street, and the building would cut off access to the section of Fresno Street between L and K Street.

Multiple council members said they liked the first design concept because of how the angled building matched the vocational center’s design and how it did not cut off access to Fresno Street.

“I think just conceptually it flows better,” Councilmember Benjamin Prado said.

Dellinger said the first option would be more costly, which turned off some council members; however, city staff estimated the difference would be approximately 3%, which helped the council ultimately go for the first option.

James said the city is not going through this design process to immediately prepare for construction but rather to facilitate long-range planning. RRM will take the selected design concept draft and turn it into a final preferred conceptual plan that will be used to design future construction plans later on.

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