Juvenile center addition slated

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Commissioners approve construction company for $15 million project

County commissioners approved Ratcliff Constructors LP to build the addition for the Denton County Juvenile Detention Center.

The more than $15 million project will be paid for by the 2010 Permanent Improvement Bond.

Beth Fleming, director of purchasing, told commissioners during a meeting Tuesday that the project came in $1.7 million under the allocated budget.

County construction manager Michael Tubiolo said the juvenile center is currently working out of four portable buildings.

“They are full,” he said. “They can’t take anymore.”

The addition will add 32 beds, eight classrooms, a cafeteria with an auditorium, an administration area and a visitation area.

Brad Isbell, vice president of Eikon Consultant Group, which is consulting on the project, said the addition will consist of two buildings — the juvenile post-adjudication building, about 25,000 square feet, and a building for the Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Program, about 29,000 square feet.

Juvenile probation officials are expecting to have more students in the future, Isbell said.

“The facility they currently operate in will not hold the students they expect,” Isbell said.

Construction is estimated to take about 16 months, Isbell said.

Tubiolo said work on the project will begin in about 45 days after commissioners approve a contract with the construction company. Ratcliff Constructors needs to get its bonds and insurance together before signing the final contract, Tubiolo said.

The addition is part of the master plan for the entire campus, which includes the county courthouse, jail and juvenile center, he said.

In December, commissioners approved a contract with Irving-based Satterfield & Pontikes Construction Inc. to expand the county jail.

The expansion is a four-story building with 384 beds — some open dormitory cells, some single-occupancy cells, some double-occupancy cells — and a medical unit, a special-needs unit for some of the high-risk inmates or ones with health concerns, and utility and site drainage renovation.

The nearly $27 million project includes more than 87,000 square feet of new construction and more than 3,000 square feet of remodeling.

RACHEL MEHLHAFF can be reached at 940-566-6889. Her e-mail address is rmehlhaff@dentonrc.com .


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