Possible new headquarters for Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office

Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 5:33 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Columbus will soon be getting a new government Center plus new space for the Sheriff’s Office and a new Judicial Center. Tuesday at city council, plans for the new buildings were presented.

Come next summer, employees housed inside of the Columbus government Center will start being relocated: It’s part of the plan for a new city hall, sheriff’s office and judicial center.

The current 11 story government center in Uptown will be demolished and a new building will take its place with some city employees going to the Synovus building... judges and courts will be in the new judicial center.

As for the Sheriff’s Office headquartered inside the current government center, if approved, the city will buy the 76,000 square foot former TSYS building next month then start renovations all before the end of the year-- a roughly 6 to 9 month process.

“There’s a lot of furniture in that building that will remain, so there is no need to purchase new furniture,” Dupty CIty Manager Pam Hodge said. “It’s in very close proximity to the jail and other public safety agencies. We negotiated that price to $2 million 525.”

There were two options for the Sheriff’s Office Administration space since it will not to be included in the new judicial center. One: construction of a new jail costing roughly $21 million or buy the TSYS building, which would cost roughly $16 million. $13 million will go towards renovations.

“The renovation budget is to bring this building up to new standards with new HVAC and a roof so there’s no maintenance that would be required on this building for twenty years,” Hodge said.

The recommendation is to fund the $2 million 525 closing costs with a local option sales tax (OLOST) from Public Safety reserves then fund the $13 million of renovations through a 20 year Columbus Building Authority bond.

With this new addition, Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office administration will now be housed mostly in the old TSYS building and continue their work in the jail, the new judicial center and the city services building.

“I can assure you wherever we have traffic coming into city buildings, we will have deputies there, and our k-9s who are trained to detect gunpowder and residue,” Sheriff Greg Countryman said.

The plan is for current government center employees to start moving out of their work space in April of next year. If everything goes to plan, the sheriff’s office administration would move into the TSYS building no later than next July.

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