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Courthouse, jail projects on track
Commission gets update on progress
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Forsyth County News

FORSYTH COUNTY — Despite a few snags, construction of the new Forsyth County Courthouse and Detention Center remain on schedule and under budget, a project official told the county commission.

Joe Lee with Carter Goble Lee LLC, program manager for the projects, gave an update during a work session Tuesday afternoon.

The new structures, which are currently rising across East Maple Street from each other in downtown Cumming, are scheduled to open by mid-2015.

Their construction is being funded by revenue from the special purpose local option sales tax, or SPLOST VII, which voters approved in a November 2011 referendum.

In addition to providing an update, Lee asked the commission sign to off on a few change orders for the project, which they did.

“The project budget is still under budget by $1.6 million and the project schedule is still on target,” Lee said. “However, we have run into some obstacles, and that’s what we’re presenting to you today.”

Lee said those obstacles include heavier-than-normal rainfall throughout the project.

As a result, he said, construction of the five-story courthouse with a basement has fallen behind by 16 days, though “the move-in date stays the same.”

In addition, Lee said the four-story jail has experienced some problems due to a high water table and underlying rock that was deeper than anticipated.

“On the jail, the problems we ran into, the high water table, we had to dig more caissons than normal, [so] we have extended it 54 days,” Lee said.

“However, what we’re going to do is finish the housing units earlier so we can train earlier so we can keep the same inmate move-in date so it doesn’t impact the county.”

As for the rock at the jail site, Lee said that created the need for more foundations and more caissons.

“With the project, we’ve installed about three-quarters of a mile of caissons underground that are anywhere from 26 inches in diameter to 56 inches in diameter,” he said.

The change orders resulting from the problems have impacted the project by $1.5 million he said, but noted that the project is still $1.6 million under the total budget.

“And we intend to keep it there,” he said.