The Redwood County Board of Commissioners is moving ahead with its plan to renovate what is now being called the government services building.

Formerly serving as the site for the Redwood County Human Services program and located just east of the courthouse in Redwood Falls, the county commissioners repurchased the building with plans to renovate the building and use it to house some of the offices and programs currently being housed in the courthouse.

The remodeling and renovation project is part of the bigger picture effort that would also result in the construction of a new justice center and the demolition of the existing courthouse.

The county commissioners met with John McNamara of Wold Architects and Pete Filippi and Larry Filippi of ContegrityGroup,Inc., which is serving as the construction manager for the project.

After putting the government services building project on hold as the board had McNamara redesign the justice center plans, the board voted to move ahead during its Feb. 17 meeting. Proceeding at this time means putting the finishing touches on the construction documents and then putting the project out for bids.

The plan would be to have the documents completed in mid-March with the documents going out for bids soon after with the intent of considering the bids in April. Should all of that proceed, the plan would then be to potentially begin work on the remodeling and renovation some time in May.

Larry and Pete Filippi presented a detailed budget estimate for the building project with a total estimated project cost of $2,110,729. However, the representatives from ContegrityGroup believe that estimate is on the high end. 

They told the board that as part of the bid process they will emphasize getting bidders into the building, so that they can see that the project is really not as daunting as one might think initially. That should particularly manifest itself in the bids for the electrical and mechanical elements of the project.

Jim Salfer, county commissioner, said he feels that cost estimate number should come down when the board actually sees the bids.

In addition to voting to move forward with the government services building, the board also took action moving the justice center project to the next level. The board approved an agreement with Wold Architects for $360,000 for its services on the project. That amount is discounted, McNamara said, as some of the work on the project has already been done.

Should that project continue to move at this pace it could go out for bids in August with construction starting in the fall.