Heights Herald/TJ Maxwell - Workers are shown atop scaffolding surrounding the Bell County Courthouse Wednesday through a reflection off the sheriff’s offices across the street in downtown Belton. The courthouse is undergoing renovations to the exterior and some work is being done on the HVAC system as well.

By Sonya Campbell

Harker Heights Herald

BELTON - Maintenance on the historic Bell County Courthouse is under way in Belton.

The work is being handled through Corporate Facilities Management, LLC, according to County Judge Jon Burrows.

"They have done several projects for the county in the past. The work being done is part of the periodic maintenance of our historic 1885 courthouse," he said.

Burrows noted the last significant maintenance/repairs were done more than 12 years ago. "To continue to preserve and maintain this great structure, we have done or are doing several projects."

A number of the projects in the interior of the courthouse have already been completed, including repainting the interior public areas, remodeling the auditor's area; replacing the entrance doors; upgrading the audio/visual equipment in the courtroom; applying foam in the attic to stop HVAC condensation, replacing the boiler and HVAC equipment, refurbishing all pipe insulation, replacing all HVAC controls and tinting the windows to reduce heat.

The exterior renovations and repair project under way include repainting the exterior, inspecting it for possible water infiltration, recaulking and reglazing windows; repairing soffits and gutters; verifying roof integrity, removing unneeded roof vents, repairing and/or replacing damaged areas to the clock tower, replacing

hand rails and remodeling/stone capping window wells.

"We anticipate being completed before July 4th," Burrows said. "Later, we will be doing some roof patching and repairs as inspections determine are needed.

The total for all those projects is about $1.2 million, which is being paid by 2010 bond funding.

"This is a great old structure that has had various levels of concern and care since 1885. Significant work was done in the 1930s, 1950s (when the dome was removed), 1999 (when the dome was put back/building was reconfigured) and the current 2011 project," Burrows said.

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