Smith Co. Jail project: Behind schedule, but under budget - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Smith Co. Jail project: Behind schedule, but under budget

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) -

The $35 million Smith County jail project is still not complete, but despite being months behind schedule, the commissioner's court says the project is staying within budget.

It may seem like progress has been slow. After all, Smith County broke ground on the downtown jail expansion in April of 2012.

"The exterior skeleton is almost complete," says Smith County Precinct 1 Commissioner Jeff Warr.

Construction has been a long and loud process, but John O'Sullivan, who lives downtown, has gotten used to it.

"It hadn't been too bad until the last few months as they're making these big concrete pours," explains O'Sullivan.

Despite that, he says the clanging and banging hasn't been too bothersome.

"That's just part of construction and it happens during day hours," O'Sullivan says.

Some parts of the downtown jail project, like the kitchen and attorney visitation areas, are nearly complete. Commissioners say the sheriff's office could be using those areas by the end of this month. As far as the rest of the project goes, in about four weeks we can expect to see bricks going up on the side of the building, making it look less like a construction project and more like a new jail.

"At least by September or so they'll probably be completely finished," explains Commissioner Warr.

Warr says security changes like ordering more maximum security cells and adding more pistol lockers are some of the small additions that have set the schedule back.

"We've got more time than we have money, so we're willing to take a little bit longer to make sure that we stay within budget," he explains.

Warr says the building will be more pleasing to the eye than you might think.

"It's going to be a very attractive building. A lot of people won't know it's a jail. It won't look like a jail from the exterior and we're really pleased. When the bricks start going up, we think people will really like it," says Warr.

All of the cells in the downtown jail will be equipped for maximum security inmates. That's a change that wasn't in the original plan, but has been made along the way. Right now, the jail hold 755 inmates. When it's complete, it will hold 384 more inmates.

Copyright 2014 KLTV. All rights reserved.

  • NewsMore>>

  • School threat deemed a prank in East Texas

    School threat deemed a prank in East Texas

    Sunday, February 18 2018 11:25 PM EST2018-02-19 04:25:49 GMT
    An East Texas school district is informing the public that a prank was taken seriously enough to cause them to go to high-security measures. White Oak ISD officials say a picture was posted online Friday that threatened harm to the school system. District officials are not saying exactly what the picture was, but the threat was taken seriously enough to cause increased security measures at the schools. By mid-morning Saturday the district determined the threat was not a real threat...More >>
    An East Texas school district is informing the public that a prank was taken seriously enough to cause them to go to high-security measures. White Oak ISD officials say a picture was posted online Friday that threatened harm to the school system. District officials are not saying exactly what the picture was, but the threat was taken seriously enough to cause increased security measures at the schools. By mid-morning Saturday the district determined the threat was not a real threat...More >>
  • Fire Marshal is seeking the cause for General Dynamics fire

    Fire Marshal is seeking the cause for General Dynamics fire

    Sunday, February 18 2018 11:22 PM EST2018-02-19 04:22:29 GMT
    Four departments were called to a fire that lit up the sky in Kilgore. The fire started around 5:30 Saturday night at 'General Dynamics' in the 42-hundred block of Longview Street. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but according to investigators, one structure was a complete loss. Crews from 4 departments converged on the building on Saturday trying to isolate a building that was burning to keep it from jumping to other areas. "When the arriving units get there, they're ...More >>
    Four departments were called to a fire that lit up the sky in Kilgore. The fire started around 5:30 Saturday night at 'General Dynamics' in the 42-hundred block of Longview Street. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but according to investigators, one structure was a complete loss. Crews from 4 departments converged on the building on Saturday trying to isolate a building that was burning to keep it from jumping to other areas. "When the arriving units get there, they're ...More >>
  • An explosion in East Texas was due to tannerite

    An explosion in East Texas was due to tannerite

    Sunday, February 18 2018 10:09 PM EST2018-02-19 03:09:27 GMT

    An explosion heard in the Lakeport was caused by tannerite. The Rusk County Sheriff stated that the loud explosion was heard Sunday evening due to people trying to blow up a tree by using tannerite. There are no injuries reported.  Copyright 2018 KLTV. All rights reserved. 

    More >>

    An explosion heard in the Lakeport was caused by tannerite. The Rusk County Sheriff stated that the loud explosion was heard Sunday evening due to people trying to blow up a tree by using tannerite. There are no injuries reported.  Copyright 2018 KLTV. All rights reserved. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly