Work crews are busy laying the infrastructure for land that will be the future home of a $70 million, 48-acre law and justice center in Sonora.
San Francisco-based Sierra Mountain Construction was awarded a $2.4 million contract to build road improvements and connect the site to city utilities, according to Tanya Allen, assistant resident engineer for Tuolumne County.
Crews will install water and sewer lines, underground power cables and telephone lines along Greenley and Old Wards Ferry roads. They will utilize an existing “dry utility trench” under Highway 108 to install communication lines without having to interrupt traffic.
Traffic delays are likely to be encountered on Greenley Road into next month, and Old Wards Ferry Road will be closed completely in late August, Allen said. She said traffic will have to be diverted around workers digging trenches in the street.
“During the summer, it’s best to avoid Greenley Road as much as you can, because there is so much going on,” she said.
Most of the work on Greenley Road will be done during the night from Morningstar Drive to just past Mono Way to reduce the inconvenience to drivers.
The county purchased the Old Wards Ferry Road land, south of Highway 108 just beyond the Sonora city limits, more than a year ago for $4.2 million. The state did not immediately agree to build the proposed county courthouse on the property, and instead conducted an independent search for a suitable site.
The state Office of the Courts recently completed its search and agreed that the newly acquired county land was the best available option.
The law and justice center courthouse will be the first building on the site, which the county hopes will include a juvenile detention center, a new California Highway Patrol headquarters, and offices for the sheriff and district attorney. The complex will eventually cost $250 million and would be built in stages over several years.