Old City Hall Is for Sale

The Architectural Heritage Foundation is seeking a buyer for its lease.

The building that housed city government in Boston for 100 years is up for grabs.

The Architectural Heritage Foundation said Thursday it’s seeking a buyer for Old City Hall. The foundation signed a lease for the building in 1970, according to the Boston Globe, and then converted it to offices and a restaurant. The Second Empire-style construction hasn’t functioned as a city hall since 1965, when city government operations moved to the Brutalist building around the corner. Most recently, Old City Hall has been home to a Ruth’s Chris Steak House, two law firms, and a wealth management firm.

The foundation is seeking a private developer to “reinvent and reinvest in the structure for the next 40 years and beyond.”

“We believe it is time for this iconic property to benefit from a new lease owner, who will bring new ideas and capital to the property, reinvigorating it for years to come,” said Sean McDonnell, president of the Architectural Heritage Foundation, in a statement. “We have fulfilled our mission and believe this is a great opportunity to bring fresh ideas and perspectives, access to capital, and deliver a sustainable future for Old City Hall in a dramatically changed downtown Boston marketplace.”

Old City Hall is technically owned by the Boston Planning and Development Agency. The foundation aims to choose a buyer to take over the lease by next month. (Let’s hope poor old Ben Franklin doesn’t topple over at the news.)