The administration of law and justice took a step into the 21st century Wednesday as ground was broken for a new court building at 100 North and 100 West in Provo.
City officials hope the vitality of Provo's downtown area will follow right behind."We hear downtown is dead and it is not going on, but in the last four years, 66 buildings have been remodeled or rebuilt - $60 million has been invested (in downtown Provo)," Provo Mayor Joe Jenkins said. "We believe downtown is on its way back and we believe this courts building will really help that."
Jenkins and other speakers praised the partnership among various state government agencies, local legislators, district and circuit court judges, the private developer and the city that was involved in putting together the courts project.
Kem Gardner, representing the Boyer Co., the project developer, said the four-story brick and granite building will be constructed on a "fast track" and should be completed by November 1990. The 60,000-square-foot building will house the 4th District and 4th Circuit courts.
The new building will have eight courtrooms, witness and prisoner waiting rooms, me It will be equipped with an extensive security system, including a separate entrance into the building for judges, television monitors and a holding cell for prisoners. The cost of building the new court facility is $4.9 million.
"We are going to end up with a quality facility that the community can be proud of and that the courts will be proud of," said Gordon Bisseggar, assistant court administrator.
Judge Ray Harding said, "We're excited about this. There are feelings of nostalgia at leaving the old court building, which has served the community well for the past 75 years. With this new building we are prepared to take the courts into the 21st century."
Jenkins said that if the good weather continues, the building could be framed in before winter.