Upshur County courthouse renovations expected to take 3 years

Gilmer ISD is working with the County to provide a temporary space for all courthouse employees to reside in a vacant school building down the street from the courthouse.
Upshur County prepares for renovations to courthouse
Published: Nov. 15, 2022 at 11:28 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 15, 2022 at 11:29 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) -The court authorized the judge to go into an inter-local agreement with Gilmer ISD in commissioners court on Tuesday.

“That renovation is going to start pretty quick. Starting in 2023, we’re going to have to relocate everybody in this building out of here for up to three years,” says Upshur County Judge Todd Tefteller.

Gilmer ISD is working with the County to provide a temporary space for all courthouse employees to reside in a vacant school building down the street from the courthouse.

The renovations are expected to take up to three years.

“The renovations right now is projected to cost right under $14 million,” says Judge Tefteller.

The County received a grant from the Texas Historical Commission for $5.2 million.

“And we think we’re going to be able to do this without selling bonds or going into debt,” says Judge Tefteller.

The remaining balance of the renovations will come from funds saved by the county and taxpayers.

Terri Ross is the Upshur County Clerk and has worked in the Court house for seven years.

“My office has flooded right above my desk on several occasions; it has flooded throughout the office here. It has flooded on my files,” says Ross.

Water often leaks through the ceilings of the courthouse when it rains.

“It’s either hot or it’s cold; we have no thermostats and no way to adjust it, so it’s either full run heat or it’s full on cold, so we dress in layers and just add or take off depending on the temperature,” says Ross.

Part of the renovations include a new roof, plumbing system, air and heating system, and a balcony that overlooks the court room.

“That will be nice to come back to a beautiful building,” says Ross.

However, Ross and other employees say they are not looking forward to the move.

The Texas Historical Commission has decided to model the renovations after the original courthouse that was built around 1872.