REMODEL: Construction of the boardroom at Little Rock City Hall has taken longer than expected. Brian Chilson

About four years ago, when pandemic protocols called for social distancing, the Little Rock Board of Directors moved their meetings out of City Hall and into a larger space. The board introduced hybrid meetings, and they physically spread out in an expansive meeting room at the Centre at University Park on 12th Street.

While Covid was the initial reason for the directors’ leave of absence from the boardroom at City Hall, a remodeling project has extended it.


When asked about the time away from City Hall, Director Capi Peck said she misses the days when the building was teeming with people.

“I often had meetings there, and it felt like the peoples’ house,” she said. “It doesn’t feel that way anymore. I hope that we return to that when construction is completed.”


Peck also noted that there are board members who were elected in recent years who have never been in the boardroom.

Peck said she hopes people will choose to come to city meetings in person once the boardroom reopens, rather than relying on virtual attendance options.


A contract for the renovation was first approved in March 2023 for about $500,000 with HYDCO, a North Little Rock company. City Clerk Susan Langley told directors at the time that they would be back in their quarters in about two months, in May 2023.

Brian Chilson
BRICK BY BRICK: New windows are being installed where old windows were bricked up.

The return was delayed, however, after asbestos and issues with the HVAC system were found. These problems increased the cost of the project by about $315,000, pushing the total to $810,000. The funds are coming from the city’s general budget.


Planned changes include rotating the whole boardroom 90 degrees so visitors would enter from the back of the room instead of the side, preserving original tile floors and installing crown molding that fits with the building’s antique design.

City of Little Rock
CHAMBER CHANGES: This rendering shows the possible new arrangement after renovations.

It’s now been a year since the renovations were first approved, and directors are still waiting to get back into City Hall. Spokesperson Aaron Sadler said construction was moving along this week with the removal of bricks from windows that were covered up previously and the installation of new windows.


The latest target date is this spring, perhaps as soon as late April, Sadler said Monday.