Pike Courthouse Annex Finally Goes Out To Bid
MILFORD — A milestone in the arduous process to build an annex to the Historic Pike County Courthouse was reached this week as the county commissioners finally advertised for bids for the project that was first proposed almost four years ago. What has never been in question was that the current courthouse and its offices, administrative county offices and law enforcement accommodations needed serious changes. As the county seat of Pike County, and with the rapid growth in population in recent years, the current buildings were simply inadequate.
The proposal called for upgraded security and combining several departments in one location, but how this was to be done resulted in a prolonged controversy. Pike County first floated an $8 million bond to pay for the addition in March 2012. The original plans for the annex were revealed in January of 2013 with the annex located adjacent to the courthouse itself and extending out to Broad Street, but the budget had risen to $10 million by that time. But aesthetics and the proposed demolition of the historic white and green Kenworthey Building were major sticking points. Some business owners, such as The Hotel Fauchere, believed the design would negatively impact tourism by changing the entire feel of Broad Street.
Finally in September 2014, County Commissioner Matt Osterberg came up with a resolution to the stalemate over the placement of the annex and a plan was finally approved that protected the Kenworthey Building. Rather than building the original L-shaped annex that would engulf the Kenworthey and project out to the Broad Street sidewalk, the new design placed the annex behind the Kenworthey and through a parking lot along Gooseberry Alley owned by the Lutfy family. The county swapped the Kenworthey Building for the Lutfy property, and the plans also call for Peach Alley to be closed from Broad Street to Gooseberry Alley, because the annex will cut across Peach Alley.
Most of the design issues have been resolved via compromise, and the county is finally prepared to accept bids for the building of the courthouse annex and for the position of Clerk of the Works/Construction Manager for the Project. Advertising for the bidding was placed in this week’s Pike County Dispatch, and sealed bids must be received by Chief County Clerk located in the Pike County Commissioners’ offices prior to 9 a.m., March 23. The bids will then be unsealed and read in the commissioners’ meeting room starting 9 a.m., March 23. This meeting is open to the public.
The Information for Bidders, Drawings, Specifications and other Contract Documents may be reviewed and obtained at the offices of McGoey, Hauser and Edsall Consulting Engineers, D.P.C. at 111 Wheatfield Drive, Suite 1, Milford, becoming available on Feb. 15 February.