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Planning for restoring the Chatham County courthouse continues

Posted Wednesday, October 20, 2010

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Pittsboro, NC - At a work session on Oct. 18, the Chatham County Board of Commissioners further discussed plans for the rebuilding of the Historic Courthouse, but will not formally vote on the functions to be housed in the building until its board meeting on Nov. 1.

Architect Taylor Hobbs, who co-chaired the Historic Courthouse Task Force, reviewed the courthouse layout and functions prior to the fire and answered questions about potential options under consideration.

During discussion, the commissioners generally agreed that they would like to see a historical museum and a visitor’s center on the first floor, along with public restrooms. If space permits, the Pittsboro & Siler City Convention and Visitors Bureau could potentially be located near the visitor’s center and a public meeting area could be located in or near the historical museum.

In response to a question, Hobbs said that it would be possible to use some of the hallway space for museum exhibits or artwork.

As discussed at the last board meeting, the commissioners continued to support the rebuilding of a Superior Courtroom on the second floor with offices for court staff.

The commissioners expressed a desire for the courtroom to have a similar look with paneling restored to its original state, but it would have updated lighting and audio-visual equipment.

Discussion included providing some leeway for the architect to explore options to increase the flexibility of the courtroom.

The board also discussed the need to ensure sufficient storage for all of the functions that will be housed there, including a place for museum staff to store exhibits and displays.

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