Jackson County's new services complex nears halfway mark

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Construction on Jackson County's new services complex is near the halfway mark. For employees who have been working in small FEMA units since Hurricane Katrina, the end can't get here fast enough.

Excitement is building for the new super-sized Jackson County Services Complex taking shape in downtown Pascagoula. Work on the $14 million facility began in spring 2010. Despite some design hiccups in the architectural plans, Board of Supervisors President Melton Harris said he's confident this complex will be a perfect fit for the downtown district.

"It all begins with a single step. And we are long down the road right now, and we are looking for a completion," Harris said.

With 12 departments inside, the 65,000 square foot facility will be a one-stop-shop for citizens. Hurricane Katrina's wind and water scattered many of the offices and folks have had to run around town to take care of their needs.

"You can come right here to the service complex and see just about everyone you need to see. From our circuit clerk, to our chancery clerk, tax assessors, the board members, everyone will be here."

More than 100 people will work in the building. After being in tight quarters for nearly six years, many said they're looking forward to finally getting some space.

"I tell everybody, now don't leave a piece of paper in my office if you need me to put my hands on it later, because we have no cabinets to file anything in."

Planning Department Director Michele Coats got a sneak peak of her office.

"It's also going to be exciting to be back downtown where we started from. It is going to be a great service to the community."

The building is expected to be move in ready by Fall.

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