Docking State Office Building Renovation

Martin de Boer
Fiscal Analyst

Shirley Morrow
Principal Fiscal Analyst

This article details recent developments regarding the Docking State Office Building (Docking Building), located at 915 SW Harrison Street in Topeka. It was built in 1954 to provide office and meeting space for state employees. Underneath the structure is an energy center that services buildings in the Capitol Complex. Beginning in 2004, the Department of Administration began vacating the building, and it currently stands mostly empty.

For additional historical information, please see the 2022 KLRD Briefing Book article titled “Status of the Docking State Office Building.”

Project Funding

On December 17, 2021, the State Finance Council approved the transfer of $60.0 million of ARPA fund moneys pursuant to 2021 SB 159. The 2022 Legislature then approved $60.0 million from the State General Fund (SGF) for the renovation of the Docking Building. Total funding for the renovation is $120.0 million. House Sub. for Sub. for SB 267 (2022 appropriations bill) provided for the lapse of SGF moneys should additional federal funds become available.

Project Design

According to the Department of Administration, as presented at the October 28, 2022, Legislative Budget Committee meeting, the new design of the building will salvage and display the most historic features of the original building and reuse a variety of existing materials. The goal is for the design to be open, with a significant view of the Capitol. The building will provide new spaces, indoor and outdoor, while maintaining the existing functions that include the central utility plant, campus facility maintenance operations, and the central warehouse. Among these new functions are:

  • Public lobby and exhibit spaces;
  • Conference and training center;
  • State agency office space;
  • Health clinic or other state service agencies;
  • Shared meeting rooms;
  • Wellness and personal health support rooms;
  • Fitness center and classroom;
  • Cafe, market, or healthy food venue; and
  • Interactive state exhibit area.

Project Roadmap

The following schedule was provided by the Department of Administration to the Legislative Budget Committee following its meeting on August 25, 2022. The project schedule was created by the architecture firm Clark Huesemann.

January 18 – 31, 2022

  • Discuss project scope;
  • Coordination with State Historic Preservation Office; and
  • Process organization.

Concept Design
February 1 – April 30, 2022

  • Review of building systems options;
  • Develop initial floor plans;
  • Develop exterior form studies; and
  • Prepare construction cost opinion.

Design and Bridging Documents
May 1 – August 31, 2022

  • Prepare owner’s requirements;
  • Finalize building floor plans;
  • Finalize building exterior design;
  • Confirm regulatory requirements; and
  • Prepare materials for Design-Build Request for Qualifications (RFQ).

RFQ Phase 1
June 1 – August 31, 2022

  • Solicit qualifications statements from Design-Build teams; and
  • State Building Advisory Commission to shortlist Design-Build teams.

RFQ Phase 2/3
September 1 – October 31, 2022

  • Solicit technical proposals from shortlisted Design-Build teams; and
  • Review technical proposals and interview Design-Build teams; and
  • Select Design-Build team.

Construction Documentation Finalization
November 1, 2022 – March 31, 2023

  • Design-Build team to prepare final construction documents.

Review and Approvals
April 1 – May 31, 2023

  • Owner to review and approve final documents.

January 1, 2023 – February 28, 2024

March 1, 2024 – May 31, 2025

Petition for Judicial Review

On May 17, 2022, pursuant to KSA 77-601, et seq. and KSA 75-2724, Plains Modern, Inc. brought action in the District Court of Shawnee County, Kansas, to obtain judicial review of the final decision regarding the demolition of the Docking Building.

According to the Department of Administration, the demolition schedule is unaffected by the judicial review, and demolition is scheduled to begin on January 1, 2023. Current status of this review is pending.