A major renovation featuring interior and exterior work at the Marion County Courthouse in Hannibal, will be moving forward following the County Commission’s acceptance of a bid.
“We’re excited about the project. It will be a good addition for the courthouse,” said Presiding Commissioner Lyndon Bode, noting the project was approved unanimously by the county’s three commissioners.
Low bidder at $229,239 was Fischer Builders of Quincy, Ill. Also submitting bids were Martin General Contractors of Eolia ($254,000) and Leander Construction of Canton, Ill., ($269,900).
The renovation, which will be paid for with money from the county’s 3/8-cent sales tax fund for capital improvements, will begin around the end of June. It is anticipated the work will wrap up in early September, according to Bode.
One of the major goals of the renovation will be to dry out the building’s basement.
“For a few years we’ve been getting a little bit of water in the western side of the basement offices in the Hannibal courthouse,” said Bode. “We’ve tried various items to fix the situation. And while the smaller solutions would help, they would never solve the problem.”
The courthouse’s basement has contained two offices. One was home to a law library. The other held the real estate portion of the county’s assessor’s office.
The law library has already been emptied. Some of the law books have been relocated. Others, because they were outdated, were donated to the Northeast Missouri Sheltered Workshop for recycling.
“The plan is for the contractor to fix up the old law library into an office. We’re going to move the assessor’s real estate office there. Assessor Mark Novak will have his own private office and we’ll have one big room for his staff,” said Bode.
Once the assessor’s office is complete, work will shift outside, according to Bode. Along the west wall of the courthouse the contractor will dig down to the base of the foundation.
“They’ll waterproof the wall underground and then put in new storm water drainage pipes for the water coming off the roof to drain out better. Those (current) pipes have been in for over 100 years,” said the presiding commissioner. “We think that will help our water problem.”
The project’s final step will feature the creation of office space for County Prosecutor Tom Redington and his staff. Redington’s office is currently located in a building across Broadway from the courthouse.
“We’ve been leasing that for a number of years. By having the prosecutor’s office in the courthouse it will save the county about $18,000 a year between lease and utilities outside of the courthouse that we have been paying,” said Bode. “In the long run it’s a good investment.”
Page 2 of 2 - Another portion of the renovation will see an air inflow system installed in the basement to keep fresh air circulating during times when neither the furnace or air conditioner is operating.