BURGAW, NC (WWAY) – Almost eight months following Hurricane Florence, two prominent Pender County government buildings are undergoing restoration.
The Pender County Courthouse will require extensive interior repairs, including removal of mold, remediation of lead paint and asbestos mastic, roof and masonry repairs, and windows and wood trim and interior and exterior architectural feature restoration. This according to a press release from Pender County officials.
Officials say complicating the restoration process is the fact that the courthouse is a national registered historical structure. They say it requires compliance with historical preservation and restoration guidelines to receive FEMA reimbursement for the associated cost.
“The restoration of the Courthouse is the top priority for the county in terms of repairs related to damage to our facilities caused by Hurricane Florence,” said Chad McEwen, Pender County assistant manager. “This has been, and will continue to be, a complex and time-consuming process.”
McEwen said LS3P, the architect, estimates court will resume in early 2020.
“Given the scope of work required to restore the building to pre-Florence conditions, the timeline provided by the architect is very ambitious,” said Allen Vann, Pender County facilities and fleet director.
Vann said it is important to note that restoration of the Pender County Courthouse involves FEMA, the county’s insurance company, the architectural firm LS3P, the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts, the Pender County Clerk of Superior Court, the North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office, and numerous other court and judicial officials.
The combination of funding sources from insurance and FEMA should result in minimal “out of pocket” expenses to the county, added McEwen.
At the Hampstead Annex, the former Topsail School, crews are installing a new ceiling and floor in the auditorium. Repairs to the drywall and woodwork in other portions of the building are also underway. Work is expected to be complete at the annex by late June.