In the News Box

The new office, which combines and replaces both the West Colonial and Winter Garden locations, officially opens on Jan. 16.

The next time you need to renew your tags or replace your driver’s license, you’ll probably head over to the West Oaks Mall.

The mall is home to the newest Orange County Tax Collector office, which combines and replaces both the Pine Hills/West Colonial and Winter Garden locations. At about 36,000 square feet — including the office’s call center — it is now the largest tax-collector office in the state.

“Those two offices (West Colonial and Winter Garden) were pretty old, with old technology and designs, and we were looking for a place where we could combine these two offices,” said Orange County Tax Collector Scott Randolph. “This pretty much fell right in the middle of those two locations. What we’ve tried to do with other past office moves is get them close to major highways. This is close to the 408, 429, the Turnpike, and all of that can be reached very quickly. It was the perfect location for that.”

Located on the southeast side of the mall in the original Old Navy space between Dillard’s and the AMC movie theater, the new office not only creates more physical space but also opens up capacity for more personnel. Randolph said both locations were at capacity in terms of personnel, and this location will have 50% more space for the call center. Additionally, 20 jobs are being added.

“I’ve wanted to do this the last couple of years, because my goal was to centralize our operation around major thoroughfares and make it easier for customers to be closer to an office,” Randolph said.

The West Colonial office closed Tuesday, Jan. 8, and the Winter Garden office will follow suit Thursday, Feb. 7.

The West Colonial office never had the capacity to offer driving tests, so Randolph and his staff are looking forward to offering customers a closer location to take driving tests. Additionally, they hope wait times can be reduced between the increased capacity and SmartPass scheduling system.

“Another great feature is the ability to get in line from home and also the text-messaging services,” Randolph said. “You can then come in, check in and get your number and enjoy yourself in the mall for a little while and wait for your number to be called.”

Source: West Orange Times