County courthouse subcommittee weighs hybrid options for Courthouse renovation 

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The Thurston County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) Courthouse Subcommittee weighed various hybrid options for the renovation of the Thurston County Courthouse Campus in its July 5 meeting. It was the second of a series of four weekly meetings. 

Among the options considered were new construction, a lease-to-own arrangement, and the possibility of establishing a public-private partnership. The committee examined each option for its potential to meet the courthouse’s requirements. 

The subcommittee discussed the problem that despite several upgrades over the years, the courthouse still faces significant mechanical and operational challenges. Essential architectural issues include a required roof replacement, inefficient HVAC systems, and outdated technology. 

Cost considerations were a significant part of the discussion. The subcommittee reviewed potential expenses associated with a new construction project, with cost projections encompassing only the design and construction phases, assuming the work would take place in 2028.  

Following these deliberations, the subcommittee moved into an executive session to discuss site selection or real estate acquisition. This step was taken to prevent any public knowledge that might lead to increased prices.  

The subcommittee has directed staff to collaborate with the county’s commercial broker for further research. 

The subcommittee will continue its weekly meetings, with the next session scheduled for 11 a.m. on Thursday, July 11, at the Atrium, 3000 Pacific Ave., Olympia. These meetings are open to the public and will be recorded via Zoom. 

For more information or to request recordings of the subcommittee meetings, please contact Amy Davis, Clerk of the Board, at amy.davis@co.thurston.wa.us. The Board’s meeting schedule and agendas are available at the county website. 

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  • Mugwump

    The existing court building was opened in 1978. That makes it 46 years old. How can it have been so poorly maintained that it needs a new roof? How can a huge building project have more of a cost benefit than just replacing an inefficient HVAC system? How can replacing an entire building complex be more cost beneficial than replacing out-dated technology? This project seems like utter madness. I, for one, am not buying the stated motivations for building new as opposed to maintaining existing. I smell a rat.

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