City of Columbia to buy $2.2 million in land; updates city manager search

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COLUMBIA - The Columbia city council agreed to buy 9.6 acres of land off of the Route KK and Scott Boulevard Monday.

The land will cost the city $2,250,000 in the River Hills Estates Subdivision. 

The Public Works staff said they will construct a salt storage facility, new fire station, water tower, electrical storage yard, and potentially a recycling center.

Councilman Ian Thomas said the need for this is a "direct reflection" of the constant growth in the southwest part of Columbia.

Columbia fire chief, Randy White, said the need for a new fire station in the area will help with the growing population in the area.

"Obviously that's an area that's had a tremendous growth in the past 15 years," White said. "It's been an area of concern for response times and long travel times it takes us to get to nearest stations, so this has been a big priority for us." 

The city council gave an update on its search efforts for the next city manager. 

The online survey for the community's input in what they would like to see in the next city manager will be available until March 15.

The council said this will give the community more time to provide feedback and they want to include those values in their search.

Originally, the council was going to start the hiring process in April, but will now start in June to accommodate council members being out of town during the process.