Courthouse renovations displace offices

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 13, 2000

Staff Writer

Nov. 13, 2000 10 PM

At the end of the week, the Pike County Courthouse will be closed for a while and those with county business will have to go to the temporary courthouse at the old Wal-Mart building.

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As of 5 p.m. Thursday, the courthouse will be closed for renovations and will be relocating to the former Wal-Mart building in the Marketplace shopping center.

The courthouse will close at the end of the business day on Thursday and will re-open to the public ­ in the temporary location ­ on Tuesday, Nov. 21. All courthouse offices will be moved, as will any court cases heard during the next few months.

County Administrator Steve Hicks said he hopes to be back in the courthouse by April 1. And, in the meantime, it will be business as usual.

Hicks said citizens can still reach the county offices by dialing the usual phone numbers.

"Basically, all that’s changing is the location," Hicks said.

Hicks, who was back and forth all day Monday, said the computer lines and office areas are ready for the Friday move.

"It’s just a matter of things falling into place," he said. "Hopefully, we’ll have everything up and running by next Tuesday."

Although relocating is a bit inconvenient, the Pike County Commission decided it was the best option.

It took commissioners a few weeks to decide whether moving was the best choice. After talking with department heads, computer people, the architect and a representative from Whaley Construction, which will be doing the work, the commission decided it was in the best interest of the public and the employees to relocate.

The $1.1 million project will include making room for an elevator which will make the courthouse handicap accessible, converting bathrooms to be in compliance with the American with Disabilities Act, as well as electrical and mechanical upgrades.

When all the dust settles, the courthouse will also have new ceilings, lighting, carpet and some paint.

Hicks also said staying in the courthouse would have likely extended work about three months.