Archive for Thursday, September 17, 2009

Groundbreaking Thursday on new JoCo JV Detention Center

September 17, 2009

Work will start this week on Johnson County’s new Youth and Family Services Center in west Olathe after more than two years in planning.

A ground-breaking ceremony is scheduled at 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, at the project site near the intersection of North Marion and West Spruce streets, and north of the Johnson County Juvenile Detention Center. Featured speakers will include Annabeth Surbaugh, chairman of the Johnson County Commission; J. Russell Jennings, commissioner for the Kansas Juvenile Justice Authority; and Betsy Gillespie, director of the Department of Corrections;

Construction of the center is scheduled to start by the end of this month with completion in the first quarter of 2011.

The cost for constructing, furnishing, and equipping the facility will be $19 million. The project also involves minor renovations to the Juvenile Detention Center.

Funding for the project will come from revenue from a quarter-cent sales tax for public safety uses approved by Johnson County voters in August 2008. The sales tax became effective on Jan. 1, 2009. The project also has received a FEMA grant of $652,500 to provide tornado safe rooms in the facility.

The Youth and Family Services Center will include approximately 44,000 square feet. The building's design is meant to provide an inviting and non-threatening image, furthering the goal of encouraging troubled youth and families to use the services offered by the center that will be located in the new facility.

Other functions include: Juvenile Intake and Assessment, Child In Need of Care, House Arrest, administrative and central support services, a staff training center, and central programs areas for Crossroads counseling, visitation, recreation, and education. It also will have 33 minimum security detention beds for low-risk juvenile offenders.

The building will be constructed with a combination of exterior materials, including limestone, burnished concrete block, sustainable hard woods, and glass.

LEED Gold certification by the United States Green BuildingCouncil is anticipated for the new facility. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance sustainable buildings.

The Youth and Family Services Center project will be the first Johnson County Government building to incorporate the county’s Public Art Program that was established in 2007. The art projects are funded by setting aside 1 percent for arts on newly constructed major capital projects.

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