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Design for new Morgan County courthouse on display at library

July 02, 2008|By TRISH RUDDER

BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. -- Morgan County residents can get a look at the design of the new county courthouse this month as sketches of the facility are being showcased at the Morgan County Public Library.

"I'm happy about the new building's look, but the cost is still worrisome," Morgan County Commissioner Brenda J. Hutchinson said Monday.

Hutchinson said the commission still was waiting for the $9 million commitment letter from the state for the loan to rebuild.

"We cannot sign a contract with bidders until we receive the commitment letter," Hutchinson said.

Hutchinson said if construction begins in August or September, the building is expected to be completed in 18 months.

Larry Springer, head librarian of the Morgan County Public Library, said Morgan County Commission President Glen R. Stotler called him and asked if the courthouse exhibits could be displayed for public viewing.

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Placards of the building's interior design show off the individual departments and courtrooms and the basic layout of the three-story courthouse, which is estimated to cost more than $13.5 million.

Renditions of the county clerk, commission and sheriff's tax offices are on display as well as the circuit, family and magistrate courtrooms.

The placards are in the glass showcase and by the entrance. A placard of the courthouse's exterior is displayed next to the showcase.

"This is one of our many community functions to inform the public," Springer said. "Everything displayed in the showcase is important to Morgan County."

"It's good to give the public a preview of the basic design and see the future courthouse," library employee Abbie Brown said.

The Morgan County Courthouse was destroyed by fire in August 2006. County government offices have been operating in trailers set up in the old courthouse parking lot on Mercer Street.

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