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Bids opened for Brooke County judicial annex project

CHECKING BIDS — The Brooke County Commission, on Thursday, held a special meeting to conduct the bid openings for a proposed annex to the Brooke County Courthouse in Wellsburg. Nine companies submitted bids for the project. Taking part were, from left, Ernie Dellatorre and Bob Smith of McKinley and Associates, and County Commissioners A.J. Thomas, Stacey Wise and Tim Ennis. -- Craig Howell

WELLSBURG — The Brooke County Commission is one step closer to the construction of a judicial annex to the Brooke County Courthouse.

The commission, along with representatives of McKinley and Associates, held a special meeting Thursday evening in order to open bids for the project aimed at providing improved space for the First Judicial Circuit Court, county magistrate and family courts and other offices.

“We’re really excited and nervous,” Commission President A.J. Thomas said prior to the bid opening.

Nine companies submitted bids prior to Thursday’s meeting, with base bids ranging between $12 million and $14 million, along with five possible project alternates.

Companies submitted bids for consideration were And-Build, Cattrell Companies, Colaianni Construction, Fairchance Construction, Grae-Con Construction, Hudson Group, Lombardi Development, Nello Construction Co., and Rycon Construction.

Three other prospective bidders did not submit a proposal by the deadline.

According to Bob Smith, of McKinley and Associates, all of the submitted bids will be reviewed over the next few days.

“We’ll look at the bids and work with the commissioners,” Smith noted, explaining the low bidder will be contacted following a review.

Thomas said there is a possibility the commission will be able to issue as notice of award for the project by Tuesday.

Thomas explained the project, which will be financed through the sale of up to $10 million in revenue bonds sold by the county building commission, had been ordered by the circuit court to address space issues for the county’s judicial operations.

“We are out of space at the courthouse,” Thomas said. “This is desperately needed.”

The 33,000-square-foot annex would be constructed on property just south of the existing courthouse, with the county previously purchasing and razing two private structures as well as a building which previously housed the Brooke County Museum.

Once completed, the annex will provide space for the First Judicial Circuit Court, the county Magistrate Court and Family Court, the Circuit Court Clerk, county Prosecutor’s Office and county Probation Office.

Thomas said construction could begin early next year.

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