Moving date is drawing near

By | March 8, 2018 8:17 am

Van Buren officials are excited as construction on the county’s new administration building is nearing completion. Staff with the county clerk’s office will soon move into their new location. (Photo by BOBBY MCCULLEY)

Construction on the new county building that will house the Van Buren County Justice Center, the county jail, and other county government offices is coming to a close as the county moves closer to a move-in date.

According to an announcement made by the Van Buren County mayor’s office, now that construction is nearing completion on the new administration building, the county anticipates moving into the new building March 19-20. The county is still awaiting final inspection and approval from the Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office before officially setting the move-in date.

This new multipurpose building will replace the former administration building that was destroyed. A massive fire broke out, on Jan. 7, 2015, that ultimately destroyed the former Van Buren County Administration Building that was located on College Street.

Because of the freezing temperatures that challenged firefighting operations that night, firefighters were unable to spray water and utilize ladders and other pieces of equipment as they became frozen over. Mutual aide was called in from surrounding areas, including White County.

The old administration building housed the mayor’s office, the election commission office, the assessor of property’s office, and the Van Buren County Historical Society. Van Buren County officials were forced to secure new offices scattered throughout Spencer.

However, because of the construction efforts being made by J. Cumby Construction, of Cookeville, and the planning efforts of the Van Buren County mayor and the Van Buren County Commission, those offices will be reunited once again with their new permanent home. Cumby Construction crews originally broke ground, in June 2016, to construct the state-of-the-art 52,000-square-feet building. This will be large enough to accommodate the space needed to centralize the various county government offices.

Uplands Design Group and J. Cumby Construction were originally awarded the bid, in May 2016, to construct the new multipurpose county building. The county awarded a bid of $11.27 million to complete the project.

“When we received the go-ahead to rebuild, we knew we had to not just replace what was lost in the fire but also think long-term into the future needs of our county,” Van Buren County Mayor Greg Wilson had previously stated.

Additionally, this new building will allow the county to address its need to expand and create a new space for the Van Buren County Sheriff Department. The new building will also house a new multipurpose jail and a courtroom with judge’s chambers.

A move-in date for the sheriff’s department had not been establish as of press time.

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