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Manchin moving Charleston Senate office to Lottery building

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The multi-million dollar home of the West Virginia Lottery will be at full capacity after it gains another high-profile tenant later this summer.

Sen. Joe Manchin will move his Charleston office to City Center West, along Pennsylvania Avenue, in August.

"It's a better space, it's a bigger space, it's more accessible for the constituents," said Jon Kott, Manchin's communications director.

Kott said Manchin's current Charleston office, located in the Robert C. Byrd Federal Courthouse on Virginia Street, is inconvenient for constituents.

"You have to go through security, you have to go to the second floor and sort of walk around the floor to get to our office," he said.

Parking options also are limited at the federal courthouse.

"Sen. Manchin has always believed that constituent services should be the top priority of any public official, and this move allows him to continue that tradition," said Hayden Rogers, Manchin's chief of staff.

Manchin's new office in the Lottery building, meanwhile, will feature free parking, more meeting spaces and on-site food options.

West Virginia Lottery spokesman Randy Burnside said Manchin's lease would be for 66 months, until the end of his term in 2018. He will pay $61,080 per year for the space, plus any additional construction costs incurred while moving into the office. Burnside said the rent covers cleaning, maintenance and utilities.

Rogers said the change in location come at no additional cost to taxpayers.

The Highmark West Virginia insurance company previously occupied the senator's new office space. Highmark still has offices in the building but has reconfigured the layout of its work areas and does not need as much space, Burnside said.

Highmark's empty space currently is the only unoccupied office in the building.

In addition to Highmark, City Center West also is home to the state Alcohol Beverage Control Administration, the West Virginia Lottery Commission, the state Racing Commission, Highmark, the West Virginia Real Estate Division, the West Virginia Division of Financial Institutions and the West Virginia Municipal Bond Commission.

"We're sister agencies; we're all housed under revenue. We share meeting space, which makes it really nice to have," Burnside said. "There's just a lot more functionality in this building than where we were before."

The Lottery Commission previously was at a former Steak and Ale location across the Kanawha River from downtown Charleston.

The state bought the 13-story office tower for $21.65 million in 2010, and then spent about $15.5 million on renovations. The building was only about 40 percent occupied before the state purchased it.

Contact writer Zack Harold at 304-348-7939 or zack.harold@dailymail.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/ZackHarold.

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