County Administrator Will Hooker said the award would be given today in Jackson by the American Institute of Architects Mississippi for the design excellence of the Bolivar County Courthouse.
"The board of supervisors is very proud that the courthouse is being recognized,” said Hooker. "The courthouse was literally standing on beams to keep it from collapsing. Before the renovation, some parts of the courthouse were inoperable, but now we are so proud to have a fully functioning courthouse. "
The board of supervisors teamed up with Roy Collins Construction Company, Inc. and Belinda Stewart Architects, P.A. to ensure that the renovation process was impeccable.
"We sought and received multiple grants and funding for this project," added Hooker.
The total expenditure of the undertaking was approximately $1.3 million dollars.
Of the cost, $1 million was funded through the three separate grants.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Department contributed $350,000, the USDA added $350,000 and the Mississippi Department of Archives and History pitched in $300,000.
The board of supervisors provided the additional cost of $300,000.
Overall, the project was managed at an approximated 70/30 grant funded overhaul.
A majority of the money went towards improving the building's weakening foundation.
“Over the years, the weight of the internal vaults in the building and the ground giving and pulling contributed to this problem," said Hooker. “We’ve made repairs to have a much stronger foundation and we’ll now be able to utilize the north wing of the building that wasn’t available before.”
According to Circuit Clerk Marylyn Kelly, one of the interval vaults is located inside of her office.
"Architects worked very hard to restore and preserve the historical value of the courthouse. The vault was one of the primary reasons that the courthouse had to be remodeled. Over the years, the vault sank and it left the office above ground," said Kelly.
"Mr. Collins did a fabulous job. It has come a long way. Everything has been restored and the lights are working. When I initially walked into my office after the renovation, I felt as though it was a blank canvas, but it looked awesome! I am intrigued by the courthouse and it is such an honor to work there."