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City to meet on court contract
City Council to review $31.9 million contract for new court facilities on election day

Date published: 11/7/2011

BY ROBYN SIDERSKY

A contract for $31.9 million with First Choice Public-Private Partners to build new courthouse facilities in Fredericksburg will be reviewed by City Council tomorrow.

The city selected the firm at the end of September over two other firms.

Since then, city staff members have been in negotiations to work out a comprehensive agreement to present to City Council.

The agreement doesn't include the purchase of 707 Princes Anne St., which is to become part of the new courthouse facility.

The city is expected to start construction in March 2012 and have the facilities completed by March 2015.

That timeframe doesn't include renovation of the Renwick building, where the Circuit Court is currently housed.

To pay for the new courthouse, City Council will need to approve a $38.7 million bond issue.

Of the total issue, $35 million is dedicated to the courts project, while an additional $3.8 million is dedicated to the refinancing of 2001 general obligation bonds.

The debt service will be $1.2 million in fiscal 2013 and $2.1 million per year there after.

The new courthouse will be at the corner of Princess Anne and Charlotte streets.

It will take the place of the existing Juvenile and Domestic Relations building, which will be demolished, along with the building at 707 Princess Anne St.

The purchase of 707 Princess Anne St. will cost the city a little more than $1 million.

The new courthouse will be much bigger than the existing one, with 78,500 square feet.

It will also have two Circuit courtrooms, two General District courtrooms, two clerks' offices, administration offices for the sheriff, secure holding cells, jury assembly rooms, judges' chambers and conference rooms.

The General District court building at 615 Princess Anne St. will be renovated to house the Juvenile and Domestic Relations court.

After the renovations are completed, there will be 17,400 square feet of space.

The first-floor offices at 601 Caroline St. will become the interim Juvenile and Domestic Relations court.

The voter registrar will move to the fifth floor, and the parking garage office will move to the second floor.

The commonwealth's attorney's office will move to the sixth floor from the privately leased space it's in now.

In other business at tomorrow's meeting, the City Council will also look at incentives for various businesses, and review a wish list for the 2012 General Assembly.

Robyn Sidersky 540/374-5413
Email: rsidersky@freelancestar.com


March to Sept. 2012: Renovate 601 Caroline St. for interim J&DR court Nov. 2012: Provide guaranteed maximum price for new courthouse Jan. 2013: Approve final construction documents for new courthouse April 2014: Substantial completion new court building Sept. 2013: Provide guaranteed maximum price on General District court renovation Dec. 2013: Approval of final construction documents for GDC renovation Feb. 2015: Substantial completion of GDC building March 2015: Complete courts project