SCOTTSVILLE — Several dignitaries were on hand Wednesday for the dedication of the Allen County Judicial Center.
The new center on Scottsville’s Main Street opened about six weeks ago, and the $14 million facility is the latest among several newly built or renovated courthouses in the state.
“This is a red-letter day for our whole system and a very significant accomplishment,” Kentucky Chief Justice John Minton said at the dedication ceremony in the district courtroom.
Built across the street from the former judicial center, Allen County’s courthouse is a 41,528-square-foot facility with larger district, circuit and family courtrooms, a circuit clerk’s office equipped with the latest record-keeping technology and improved security features.
Lexington architectural firm Sherman Carter Barnhart designed the building, and Codell Construction Co. of Winchester was the construction manager.
The Kentucky General Assembly authorized the center in 2008 and approved its funding in 2010, allowing Allen County to join Logan and other counties that have built new judicial centers in recent years.
“This majestic new building symbolizes to all who pass by that Allen County puts a high value on the power and privilege of our democratic form of government,” Minton said.
Allen County Circuit Clerk Todd Calvert said the new building incorporates a few touches from the county’s old courthouse that was built in 1903 on the other side of Scottsville’s town square, including the bell from the clock tower in the old building.
The wooden clock face from the tower will also be refurbished and hung inside the lobby area, Calvert said.
Those vestiges will be part of a facility that Calvert said was overdue.
“We used to have records stored in old jail cells, so we’re glad to be in this beautiful building,” Calvert said.
Minton said that several local and state officials acting as part of a volunteer committee had a hand over the years in securing the funding for the center and making suggestions for the design that were later applied by the architects and builders.
“They negotiated over every detail of this building,” Minton said.
State Rep. Wilson Stone, D-Scottsville, said he expects the new judicial center to have a long life as the place where justice is administered.
“So many people had a hand in seeing that justice in Allen County got to where it is today, and I am proud to be able to place my confidence in them as time goes on so that this building will not be worn out in 25 years, 40 years, 50 years or even 100 years,” Stone said.