Work on courthouse security entry is underway


Construction on the west side of the Washington County courthouse began last week. A heavy equipment operator with Advanced Terrain Design, Inc. rips out the old sidewalk. Photo by Philip A. Janquart
By: 
Philip A. Janquart
Last week, crews began taking out sidewalk on the west side of the Washington County Courthouse where a new security entryway will be installed.
 The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) accessible entry will be equipped with a metal detector to be installed by Beniton Construction and manned by at least one law enforcement officer.
 It will become the main entry into the courthouse and will match the design of the historic building, which was constructed in 1940 after the original structure was destroyed by fire. 
 The entry is anticipated to be completed some time in December at a cost of approximately $1.4 million, which will not be paid by taxpayers. Funds for the project come from the 2021 American Rescue Plan Act, a $1.9 trillion stimulus package passed by congress in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Other projects planned for the courthouse include creating more parking space in front of the building, which means taking out a large section of lawn, which will cut down on maintenance needs.

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