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Commissioners Hear Update on Smith County Courthouse, Parking Garage

by | Jun 12, 2024 | News

This article originally appeared on the Tyler Morning Telegraph.

Architects and construction managers on Tuesday updated the Smith County Commissioners Court at its meeting on the status of the parking garage and courthouse project.

“It’s been exciting to watch this project go up,” Judge Neal Franklin said. “I tell everybody, they played in the dirt for about two months then all of a sudden it just took off. Watching that go up has really truly been something exciting.”

Despite over a month of weather-related disruptions, the five-story, 543-vehicle parking garage is on schedule to open in the fall of 2024, with a cost of $15.4 million.

Stephen Flournoy, Hoar Construction project executive and Brandy Ziegler, partner with Fitzpatrick Architects showed an updated time-lapse video, unforeseen challenges, pleasant surprises and the timeline for continued construction.

After several months of dirt work, and the removal of unexpected material, Flournoy said, the team was able to lay 1,250 yards on concrete during the wettest parts of the year. As of Monday, 458 of the 504 precast pieces have been set.

‘We’re very, very close at this point,” Flournoy said.

The $179 million Courthouse and Parking Garage Bond was passed by voters on November 8, 2022. Ziegler said the project is on time and under budget. In May 2022, the projected cost was $16.9 million, however the actual cost has been $15,399,74.

The remainder will go to the courthouse budget, which is currently $163,600,257.

As the parking structure is being built, design teams are finalizing plans for the courthouse in collaboration with more than 40 architects, engineers and consultants.

“We’ve been balancing safety and security, the functionality and efficacy of the courthouse,” Ziegler said. “All while balancing the quality and aesthetics of the building that we can all be proud of for the next 100 years, staying within that voter approved amount.”

In July demolition of the block of Spring Avenue properties, east of the current courthouse, is expected to begin. Phase 2 construction fencing will go up for the courthouse project. That is expected to take about two years and reach completion in the last summer of 2027.

 

 

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