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Initial Work Started On Putnam Jail Expansion, Groundbreaking Set For October

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Initial Work Started On Putnam Jail Expansion, Groundbreaking Set For October

Preliminary work has begun on the Putnam County Jail expansion project in its lower parking lot this week.

Sheriff Eddie Farris said that engineers have been on-site working to finalize details and ensure everything is ready to break ground sometime in October. Farris said the construction company has been working with their partners on initial engineering work and finalizing the architectural designs.

“The engineers are onsite doing some drilling to make sure that what’s underneath is what they expect,” Farris said. “And just verify the things they already know from months ago from doing some work. As you know in Cookeville we have a lot of caves and different things like that so they’re just working on that.”

Farris said that once ground breaks they expect it two be about a two-year process. He said that the lower parking lot will most likely be closed to the public and eventually to Sheriff’s Department employees. He said that visitors should utilize parking on Spring Street and down the road. Farris said that additional parking will be some of the first work completed to ensure the public has a place to park for their court business.

Farris said that with the work being a long time in the making, he’s ready to get it started.

“It’s sort of two-fold,” Farris said. “It’s certainly exciting. It’s something that should’ve been done several years ago and it’s taken a while to get it done. It seems like the county is in really good financial shape right now and the stars sort of lined up and we’ve got a very good commission that certainly was very glad to make decisions so that’s the good part. We certainly are going to have our work cut out for us based on what’s going the last 18 months. It’s very difficult not only in law enforcement but other types of work too to find people and individual personnel to work so we’re sort of gathering up and working to find a campaign behind the scenes to hopefully start doing some advertising so we can hopefully find the personnel to operate it.”

Farris said the next steps are to finalize the drawings and the engineering work to break ground in October. He said that the two properties behind the jail on Locust Street also need to be demolished to extend the parking area, and that should happen concurrently with the construction.


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