City transforms historic train depot into City Hall

HALSEY, Ore.- It was a typical city council meeting in Halsey on Tuesday night.

The councilors arrived to approve business as usual.

But on this night, the Halsey City Council held their first city council meeting in the community's historic train depot.

The town of Halsey was named after William Halsey, the vice president of the Willamette Valley Railway Company.

"The city was founded on the spot where a work camp was cited for the winter," said Marjean Cline, mayor of Halsey.

With the railroad running through the heart of Halsey, the city decided there was no better place for City Hall.

"We know that we're the train city, we try to be anyway," Cline said.

It took 14 years for builders and community members to renovate the historic building.

"Builders came in and helped with the framing and the drywall," Cline said. "It's just been amazing how the community has really helped to get this done."

The City of Halsey spent half a million dollars on the project. Mayor Cline said the project was funded by donations, grants and general fund dollars.

"We've looked for innovative ways of financing rather than taking it out of the regular taxes," Cline said.

While bucks and hard work went into building the new city hall, city officials said experiencing an important piece of Halsey's history is well worth it.

"You wonder how many people came in and out of this building," Cline said. "It's just a piece of Halsey's history and I'm so thrilled that we were able to finally get it finished."

Not all residents were happy about the project, however.

Some residents we talked to said $500,000 is just to much money to spend on the city hall.

There will be an open house and public reception at the new City Hall this Saturday from noon to four.