Ketchikan’s City Council will return to a familiar question for its first meeting of the new year: should the city purchase a West End property to add about 60 harborside parking spaces?

That’s one of a few items on the City Council’s agenda for Thursday night. 

The owner of the shuttered Bar Harbor restaurant wants $395,000 for the property, according to a memo to the city council. But a third-party appraisal commissioned by the city valued it at just $300,000. 

A Juneau-based engineering firm also hired by the city found lead and asbestos in the building, and officials say it would cost nearly $15,000 to dispose of hazardous materials.

Public works officials estimate that demolishing the former restaurant would cost another $50,000. 

In other business, options on reconfiguring Tongass Avenue north of downtown will be discussed by state transportation planners. The proposed project runs from the downtown tunnel near Grant Street to PeaceHealth Medical Center. 

The plan would convert the four-lane portion of the road to a three-lane road with a bike lane. It would also revise traffic light timing at intersections with Washington and Jefferson avenues to improve pedestrian safety. But local officials question some of the plan’s details including the need for pedestrian islands at many of the crossings.

The plan would also install pedestrian signals at the intersection between Schoenbar Road and Tongass Avenue.

The City Council is expected to discuss its input into the project design at Thursday’s meeting. 

Thursday’s meeting gets underway at 7 p.m. in Ketchikan’s City Council chambers.

This story has been updated to correctly describe the location of Bar Harbor Restaurant. The property is in Ketchikan’s West End, not downtown as previously reported.