A small shopping center at 175 Mount Vernon Highway will be condemned to speed the city’s takeover of the site, which is pegged to become a parking lot for the City Center project.

The City Council approved the condemnation of the four-storefront Mount Vernon Walk center at its July 7 meeting. The city is in negotiations with the property’s owner, the Evelyn S. Sauls Real Estate Trust, and is offering $1.75 million.

City attorney Wendell Willard requested the condemnation, saying it likely will trigger an end to the commercial tenants’ leases and ease the negotiations.