County courthouse

The county will host an ice cream social from 5 to 8 p.m. July 15 at the historic courthouse. 

The Washington County Board of Commissioners approved a contract with HGA July 6 for the Washington County Historic Courthouse Exterior Rehabilitation Project.

The contract is for $399,890.

The Washington County Historic Courthouse is one of the oldest standing courthouses in Minnesota, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971. The courthouse is a two-story brick-faced masonry building. The original courthouse was built in 1870, with subsequent additions of the jail and what is now the vault exhibit space, which were built in 1900. A ramp and stairs at the west side of the courthouse is of the more recent construction.

Washington County moved the judicial and county services out of the building in 1975. The courthouse is now part of the Washington County Parks system.

In 1979, Washington County installed a new lead coated copper roof. In 2017, an assessment of building and site was performed. In the final report, it was recommended that the county perform a detailed inspection of the exterior of the building. In 2018, that exterior was inspected and the needed restoration project scope was developed.

The contract is for architectural services to replace the roof, restore the cupola, and repair the brick and mortar. The company will do an assessment of the condition of the building, create design documents, get permits and agency approvals, and create documents that will be used to solicit bids.

Funding for the project will be from the Historic Courthouse Restoration Fund.

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