Humidity levels in the concrete slab at the new Senoia Police Department and Municipal Court Building located at 505 Howard Road continue to delay its opening. But humidity levels due to heavy rainfall totals since construction began are decreasing and the 8,308 square-foot facility is expected to open in a few weeks.
Though originally planned at 7,325 square feet, including 5,373 square feet for the police department and 1,952 square feet for the municipal court, the courtroom had been enlarged to accommodate the need to seat 80 people. That adjustment brought the courtroom portion of the project to 1,500 square feet, for a total 2,933 square feet for the municipal court portion of the building and 8,310 square feet for the entire facility.
Open or not, Police Chief Jason Edens was only too happy Wednesday to provide a tour of the building. The court services side will feature a large court room with offices for the court clerk and the judge and a holding room for inmate court appearances. Technologically, it is state-of-the-art and will provide for the digital recording of court proceedings.
On the police side, there are offices for the clerk, shift commander, captain and the chief. And there are three offices for investigations, a conference room, work areas for road supervisors, interview and observation rooms, computer room, weapons storage and evidence rooms, an intoxication room, a roll call and break room, shower room and a number of supply and storage rooms.
“It’s got just about everything you can think of. And it’s user-friendly for officers and citizens,” Edens said, saying it is difficult to put his feelings on the project into words. “Every vision for what I have for the police department is solidified with what we’re doing here and (with the building opening) it will bring a new face to the department. We’re always working to increase the level of professionalism. It’s exciting to know that we’ve had this much support from the mayor and council and the citizens to provide something like this. It’s amazing.”
City Administrator Richard Ferry the issues with the relative humidity in the concrete slab is a result of the significant periods of rainfall that occurred during the building’s construction phase.
“We need the relative humidity of the slab to decrease so that the glue used for the flooring can be warrantied,” Ferry said.
And those humidity levels are decreasing sufficiently to expect that the building can open in the next few weeks, Ferry said.
Bid winner Triad Construction was one of 19 bidders on the project that was awarded last August. Bids ranged from the $1.049 million low submitted by Triad to the $1.484 million from Prime Contractors.
The city council in February 2009 adopted a resolution allowing the project to move forward with a funding mechanism through Georgia Municipal Association’s (GMA) Brick and Mortar Program. Through the program, GMA essentially purchases the property, constructs the building and leases it to the city. Once the building is paid off, GMA signs it back over to the city.
The complex is situated on approximately three acres on Howard Road near the city’s ball fields. The land was purchased from Southern Mills in 2008 for $232,000. The project was funded largely through the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST).