Earlier this year, the Barry County Board of Commissioners committed to bringing the community together to build a new county jail and COA building, the first step toward replacing the inadequate facilities.
Tower Pinkster Architects/Engineers has been selected by commissioners as consultants to facilitate the building project. The next step is for county Administrator Michael Brown and Tower Pinkster officials to draft a consulting Services Agreement for commissioners to approve.
Tower Pinkster proposes developing a detailed space utilization program to find the needs of the jail and COA for years to come, develop planning documentation, budget information, and engage the community for support of the initiatives through bonding and work with the county through the voting process.
Tower Pinkster developed a Master Facilities Plan for the county in 2015 (see related story), and recommended the county build a new jail and COA. Tower Pinkster’s process is similar to the earlier facilities plan. They will review the information they have on file for the jail and COA before on-site visits.
The county will appoint a steering committee of community leaders. Working with the steering committee, county staff, administration, and with public input, Tower Pinkster plans to develop options for the projects for county officials, “that will show a clear vision forward.”
The firm will gather data, update the assessment report, inspect the facilities and do walk-throughs, and compare the cost of modifications and renovations against the cost of building new.
The steering committee and officials will be involved in meetings, tours of the facilities and visioning sessions.
Tower Pinkster will provide concept site plan options for both facilities; the options will be reviewed and a final concept selected. The firm has outlined an information campaign on a bond plan to fund the projects that includes community forums, use of social media and frequently asked questions.