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New projects planned in Huntington

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By JAMES E. CASTO
For The State Journal

HUNTINGTON — Renovations are envisioned at Huntington City Hall and the Cabell County Courthouse if necessary funding can be secured. 

City Hall will be 100 years old in 2014, and with that anniversary in mind a plan is afoot to raise $150,000 to redecorate the building's main hallway. Dr. Joseph B. Touma, who has renovated several downtown buildings in recent years, is leading the fundraising effort. 

Meanwhile, the Cabell County Commission has voted to seek a $100,000 state grant to repair the courthouse's bell tower. County Manager Chris Tatum said the tower is supported by a combination of steel and wooden beams, but the wooden beams have badly deteriorated. Tatum said there's no immediate danger, but safety concerns demand that the wooden beams be replaced. 

At City Hall, Touma said $50,000 has been raised as seed money for the planned renovation project. The money was donated to the City of Huntington Foundation by friends of Verna Gibson to honor her on her induction into the Huntington Wall of Fame. 

Huntington Mayor Steve Williams said the main hallway at City Hall was last redecorated in 1985. 

"Our remodeling is long overdue," Williams said. 

Interior Perspectives of Wheelersburg, Ohio, has been hired to plan the work, which is expected to include installation of a new welcome desk near the main entrance, new lighting fixtures, carpeting and floor tiles, as well as new paint and vinyl wall coverings.