Commissioners table decision on courthouse expansion

LAWRENCEVILLE - Officials have delayed a decision on the first step to a 200,000-square-foot expansion of Gwinnett's courthouse.

After 14 responses to a bid for design and construction administration for an expansion to the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center, five companies were interviewed and staff recommended the $2.8 million contract be awarded to Pieper O'Brien Herr Architects.

But Tuesday, Commissioner Kevin Kenerly tabled the decision until next month.

"I want to understand this more because when they build this it's going to be here for a long time, so I want to make sure it's done right," Kenerly said. "If something happens, it'll be on Kevin's watch."

The county had negotiated $200,000 in savings with the firm, which was the highest-scoring low bidder, Support Services Director Steve North said.

About $70 million of the 2009 special purpose local option sales tax, which was approved by voters last year, has been earmarked for the expansion. North said officials envision about 200,000-square-feet built in an L-shape off the existing Langley Drive facility, as well as a parking deck.