I-4'S NOT THE ONLY PLACE THAT'S CRAMPED...SO IS THE POLK COUNTY COURTHOUSE
The Polk County Courthouse is only 21 years old, built in 1984 to serve the needs of one of Florida's fastest growing counties for years ahead. Over 440,000 square feet in ten stories...and it's time to grow again.
New construction is not an option: Money is especially tight, and there's no more space to build out. An architect has been hired to help officials decide which offices have to move out, and decisions have to be made as to where to put those displaced employees.
The Florida Supreme Court had determined that the 10th Judicial Circuit, which is based in Bartow, is in need of seven new judges. Once the Legislature approves the positions, certainly most of the judges --- and their secretaries, clerks, and related employees --- would be assigned to the Bartow courthouse...and there's no more room now to work with.
There had been some discussion of moving some employees to the old Scotty's home improvement store a few blocks away, but the county could not put a cohesive plan together as to who would make the move, and the owner had other offers pending and could not wait any longer. Frankly, there's not a great deal of office space available in Bartow; at least the amount that will be needed now.