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City Hall damage proves troublesome to repair
City Hall smashed.jpg
A pickup smashed into McMinnville City Hall while driving in reverse in mid-December causing interior and exterior damage to the building.

Repairing City Hall won’t be as easy as it sounds. 

The building was constructed five decades ago. On its exterior, slabs of marble and black marble trim were used. 

“We haven’t heard anything back from the insurance company,” said city administrator Bill Brock, when asked about an estimate on cost. “The holdup is the marble, the black marble on the bottom, and the stone cut along the top. That’s something we don’t have locally. The building was constructed in 1969. We don’t even know where that material came from.”

A 74-year-old driver struck the building with his 1999 Ford F150 in mid-December. According to police reports, Robert Harris visited the ATM at Regions Bank, which occupies the first floor of the City Hall building. As he was backing out of his parking space, he accidentally pushed down on the accelerator with the steering wheel turned. 

The pickup did a half moon in reverse around the parking area before hopping the curb, crashing into a bench, and smashing the City Hall building with its back bumper. 

The impact cracked the marble and damage to the concrete block underneath can be seen from inside the building.

Brock says a search is underway to determine if that material can still be found today. 

“Our insurance company is trying to get a price overseas as to what it would cost,” said Brock. “We are trying to contact several different companies in an attempt to find out where this material might have come from. That was 50 years ago and we just don’t know.” 

Harris does have motor vehicle insurance, but according to Brock, an insurance adjustor expressed concern the damage may exceed the payout limit.