CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Renovations to the long empty State Capitol Complex’s Building 3 will be “substantially complete” by the end of April and moves into it could begin by June, according to information from the West Virginia Department of Administration.

Building 3 will eventually house more than 500 state employees in the Department of Commerce, Division of Tourism, Workforce West Virginia, Office of Economic Opportunity, Division of Labor, West Virginia Development Office and Division of Personnel.

Shauna Johnson/

The distinctive features of Building 3, like this art piece over its entrance, will remain even after renovation work is finished.

It’s a project that’s been in the works for a decade.

The initial proposal for renovations to Building 3 came in 2007. The last of the previous occupants of the building, which was originally designed by Cass Gilbert, Jr., the son of the designer of the State Capitol, left it in 2010.

The project was first put out to bid in 2011, but those bids were scrapped when they came in well above projections.

At one point, after rebidding for the $34 million project, the goal had been to reopen Building 3 before former Governor Earl Ray Tomblin left office.

Updated cost estimates were not immediately available.

Overall, state officials have said the project maintains the historical character of the building “while bringing the overall building infrastructure and layout into the 21st Century.”

Most people used to know Building 3 as the “DMV building.”

In addition to the Division of Motor Vehicles, previous agencies in Building 3 included the Department of Health and Human Resources, what is now the Division of Financial Institutions, the Division of Natural Resources, and the Office of Technology.

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

bubble graphic

bubble graphic