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Officials lock in on name for new jail
Project remains under budget, on track for March opening
Work on the new Forsyth County courthouse and jail is continuing in downtown Cumming. Both facilities are supposed to be ready on time. - photo by FCN file photo

FORSYTH COUNTY — It’s official: Forsyth County’s new jail, which is well on its way to completion, will be called the Forsyth County Jail.

The building’s name, a change from the current “detention center,” was one of the details discussed Thursday afternoon during a project update on the jail and courthouse construction.

The jail is on track to be completed by March 5, while the courthouse could beat that date by nearly two months.

The facilities are being built across Maple Street from each other in downtown Cumming. Their construction is part of a voter-approved, $100 million 1-cent sales tax-funded project that also includes two parking decks.

Ideas on how to coincide courtroom tours with a combined ribbon cutting were aired by the project team, which consists of vital division heads most affected by the buildings. Those include Forsyth County Sheriff Duane Piper and Superior Court Chief Judge Jeffrey Bagley.

The location of the jail’s lettering and the courthouse’s fountain, Lady Justice statue and base, as well as the rotunda inscription, were all brought up.

“When we get down to this phase of the project, we get to some of these details,” said Doug Derrer, the county’s manager. “But we need to do it.”

The team approved an additional $2,000 be proposed to the Forsyth County commission as part of a change order to enlarge the office of Clerk of Courts Greg Allen.

Allen said he has more employees, 35, than anyone else in the courthouse. At present, they can’t all fit in his office at one time for a meeting.

The budget for this order was a small portion of changes to the budget the team passed along to the commission.

With some orders asking to use more of the budget and others reporting a cost lower than initially estimated, they agreed to use $500,000 from the owner contingency fund.

However, this still left them nearly $600,000 under budget from what they have available in the 1-cent sales tax budget.