Gardiner City Hall opened Monday with new hours to better allow its residents to access the services provided by the city, including vehicle registration and issuing permits.

City Hall will stay open later on Wednesdays and open half an hour later than it previously opened on most days. The new schedule will also leave an hour before the office opens to the public on Wednesdays for staff meetings, City Manager Scott Morelli said.

City Hall used to be open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The new hours are:

Monday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Tuesday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday: 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 pm

Morelli said the city staff and councilors wanted a day with extended hours to give residents who couldn’t get to City Hall until after work a chance to do so.

The city conducted a survey at the November 2012 election asking if residents would use extended hours. More than half said they would and the majority of those said they preferred later hours, Morelli said. There are also more transactions near the end of the day than the beginning, he said.

Morelli said it will likely be a year or two before city staff can determine if the new hours work for residents or if another change should be made.

“We probably aren’t going to see the true effect for a good year,” he said.

The change isn’t expected to affect the cost of running City Hall, Morelli said. The city sent postcards about the new office hours to those listed in the city’s real estate tax records.

Paul Koenig — 207-621-5663 pkoenig@centralmaine.com 4Twitter: @paul_koenig