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October 04, 2019
Groundbreaking Celebrates Start of Facility Project Construction
Construction for the Franklin County Court Facility Improvement Project symbolically began yesterday by breaking ground at the foot of the historic Courthouse.
Construction for the Franklin County Court Facility Improvement Project symbolically began yesterday by breaking ground at the foot of the historic Courthouse. Over 70 attendees gathered in Courtroom One to celebrate the occasion, hearing remarks from the Board of County Commissioners, Mike Ross of Franklin County Area Development Corporation, Mark Miller of the Downtown Business Council, Steve Christian from the Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce and Pennsylvania Secretary of Corrections John Wetzel. An invocation and blessing was offered by Pastor Catherine Boileau of First United Methodist Church of Chambersburg. County Administrator Carrie Gray acted as Master of Ceremonies.
“As County Commissioners, as judges, as elected officials, and as employees–we are charged with doing better for our community. We are charged with meeting needs when and where they arise. This courthouse campus, the future Administration Building and Archives Facility—they are the result of centuries of progress, trials and tribulations, decision making, community partnerships and collaboration,” said Commissioner Chairman Dave Keller. “Our citizens are our customers and through this project we will be able to serve them better,” he added.
“The change that is coming here will be efficiency like no one has ever seen before in this county,” said Commissioner Bob Thomas.
Commissioner Bob Ziobrowski remarked that the project will be delivered on time and on budget. “The tax increase of 1.5 mills has already been levied. There will be no additional tax increases from this project,” he said.
The Court Facility Improvement Project is a multi-faceted project including a new Judicial Center and Administration Building, an Archives Facility, and renovations to the Old Courthouse and Courthouse Annex. Once complete, administrative offices and court-related offices will be co-located for ease-of-use and operational efficiency. The buildings will also offer enhanced security for all who enter as well as adequate space for growing demand.
“As our population grows, so does our need for education, human services, and judicial services,” said Mike Ross, President of the Franklin County Area Development Corporation who included the Court Facility Improvement Project as one of the many recent development projects positively impacting the community.
“This new project doesn’t just address the space, accessibility and safety concerns present in the current facilities, it is also an incredible investment in the future of our downtown and will serve as a symbol of the county’s unwavering commitment to fairness and justice for everyone,” Mark Miller, representative of the Downtown Business Council of Chambersburg, commented.
“These new facilities will enhance the effectiveness and efficiency for our law enforcement and judicial professionals, drastically improve safety and security for all those who utilize our court system, and enhance how governing entities serve the citizens of Franklin County for many years to come,” said Steve Christian, Executive Director of the Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce.
“You cannot have the community you love so much without a criminal justice system that’s functional and effective and works for everybody involved,” said John Wetzel, Pennsylvania Secretary of Corrections. To the Commissioners, he added, “Congratulations for having the guts to do the right thing.”
Construction of the Franklin County Judicial Center is on schedule for completion in the fall of 2021.
Left to right: Mark Miller, Downtown Business Council; Steve Christian, Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce; Mary Beth Shank, County Solicitor; Bob Thomas, Commissioner; Dave Keller, Commissioner Chairman; Bob Ziobrowski, Commissioner; Carrie Gray, County Administrator; John Wetzel, Pennsylvania Secretary of Corrections; Mike Ross, Franklin County Area Development Corporation
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