Historic Wicomico County Courthouse Needs $3.8 Million In Repai - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Historic Wicomico County Courthouse Needs $3.8 Million In Repairs

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SALISBURY, Md. - It stood strong for more than a century, but now the old historic Wicomico County Courthouse is growing weak. The building needs $3.8 million dollars in repairs to get the landmark in top shape. 

Wicomico County officials asked engineering firm Simpson Gumpertz & Heger's to conduct and assessment on the building last fall. County Executive Rick Pollitt said it was a necessary move when officials noticed damage to the exterior. Pollitt said damage to the clock tower, which was covered on all four sides with plywood last November, is one of several parts of the building that needs repair.

" Once we had a couple of the big wind storms, we noticed the clock tower started to shimmy a little bit, and when we went up to check the damage for that, we saw the facing around the clock coming apart," he said. 

According to the report, the clock tower is not the only part of the courthouse that needs repairs. Some of the walls, windows, ceilings and roof need to be fixed. Water leaks are to blame for some damaged interior as well. 

The three-story courthouse was built in 1878 in downtown Salisbury at the corner of Main and Division Street.

Nancy Brown, who has lived in Salisbury for more than 20 years, has always admired the historic landmark. 

"I think it's a beautiful building, and I think it needs to be preserved," Brown said. "There's something about the history that you can't bring back," Brown said, who thinks Wicomico County residents should donate a few bucks to help fix it.

Pollitt said he is thinking about ways to raise the money for repairs, since the hefty price tag cannot be totally covered under the county's budget. He said he is thinking about a public-private partnership with friends of the courthouse for a campaign to help raise money. 

Victoria Clayton, who lives in Salisbury, does not think the county should pour that much money into repairs.

"It's ridiculous for an old building, especially for a courthouse," Clayton said. "We can always find another building." 

Pollitt said the clock tower is top priority. He said it will cost no more than $25,000 to fix. 

As for other repairs, the county will have to find funding to make it happen. 
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