WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Demolition on areas of the Wichita County Courthouse is set to begin later this week, but before those much-needed renovations, Wichita County employees got to pitch in and help.
Plenty of fun, stress relief, and excitement for what the first floor will look like in the near future.
“When the county took over the building in the 70s, they made some improvements and that was the last time it was touched,” Commissioner Mark Beauchamp from Wichita County Precinct One.
“I know a lot of things have changed since the 70s so it was time, it needed some facelift, needed some help,” Beauchamp said.
On Wednesday, renovations will officially begin, but Monday evening, Wichita County employees had the first crack.
“What other great opportunity do you have to take a hammer to the place you work,” Beauchamp said.
The district clerk’s office will move into a future brand new first-floor office for easier public access. There will also be a brand new law library where citizens can also access public records and county services such as human resources will also make the move.
Precinct One Commissioner Mark Beauchamp, who’s been the county’s lead on this and the law enforcement center project has stayed busy.
“He’s done tremendous work in doing those things and didn’t stop to admire his work at the end and moved on, “Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom said.
A move that was more evident by the day, as this time last year the county was experiencing major issues days before the general election.
“One of the biggest elections of our lifetime was about to occur and our whole elections room was wet because we had a north wind and the wall leak, and that precipitated part of this project in squeezing them all together into one,” Beauchamp said.
Beauchamp says the total project initially had a 6-million dollar price tag, but doing it all together cuts almost 2-million off the total price.
Leaving county leaders room to look at other areas of need after this first project.
“Now we can look at some significant changes in our courtrooms and the annex and the tax area and some other offices, really dressing up and cleaning up those buildings for a county our size,” Gossom said.
Changes that are decades overdue, but will benefit the county for decades to come.
The county annex downtown and elevators at the courthouse are also both included in this round of renovations.
Be on the lookout for updates throughout these projects!