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County on track with HVAC move
Offices relocating for year-long project
county hvac move
Pictured is the former JC Penney building at 1500 Kansas in Great Bend. Most of the Barton County offices will move to the location for a year while the Courthouse’s HVAC system is replaced.

With June 1 here and Barton County operations still humming in the Courthouse, plans are to start moving county offices to the former JC Penney building at 1500 Kansas in Great Bend on June 15, county commissioners said Wednesday morning. The move is necessitated by the $4.2 million year-long project to replace the courthouse's HVAC system, slated to begin July 15.

Offices from the first two floors of the courthouse will set up shop on the ground floor at the new location, County Administrator Matt Patzner said. This includes such departments as Treasurer, Clerk, Register of Deeds and Appraisal.

The door off of the parking lot on the east side of the structure will be the front entrance, he said. 

The Treasurer’s Office will be located close by, since it gets the most foot traffic.

The building is being leased from current owner High Noon Properties at a cost of $4.35 per square foot for the anticipated year. 

Other temporary locations

The former Sears store at 1709 Main will house the 20th Judicial District and related court services, including the courtrooms. These are now on the third floor of the courthouse.

To accommodate the need for privacy for these operations, the county is looking at having Mark’s Custom Signs install screening on the windows, commission chairman Shawn Hutchinson, District 3, said. They are awaiting a cost estimate for this, but noted it would cost about $300-500 to have this removed a year from now.

This building is being leased from Great Bend LLC for $6.83 per square foot.

The County Attorney’s Office, which had also been on the courthouse third floor, is already operating at 1520 Main, Patzner said. This is leased from Concept Commercials LLC for a $4.62 per square foot.