Groundbreaking for New County Public Works Building in Cook

Renee Passal
Updated: June 13, 2018 06:43 PM

On groundbreaking day, there was actual ground being broken. KGM Contractors was moving dirt on the 60 acre site in Cook, where the new $23 million public works facility is being put up. 

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Crews took a short break while county leaders gathered for a press conference.

Mike Jugovich, Commissioner for district 7, said, "This actual shop and building will service 2000 square miles, and 567 miles of roads. You can see how important this area is."

County Administrator Kevin Gray added, "We are fully committed to all of St. Louis County."

The county said there will be three new buildings to house critical equipment like plows and trucks. "We are going to build this building with 100% domestic steel, folks," Commissioner Keith Nelson pointed out. He represents the 6th district.

Plus, they will utilize the existing building on-site, which used to house Disability Specialists. Commissioner Tommy Rukavina pointed out that important sale to the county, plus the cooperation from the city of Cook. "We purchased the additional land from the city," he said.

At the current garages in Cook and Linden Grove, the buildings were put up in 1978 and 1930. There's no designated indoor storage. So if they want to put trucks inside, they have to be moved into the maintenance bays. And sometimes, that meant taking the plows off. The new facility will help lengthen the longevity of the equipment, and provide a safer work environment.

Mike Forsman, a former county commissioner, said this has been a dream of his for years. "This facility here with the correct garage and all of the opportunities for our different departments. It's very exciting."

There will be other county employees who work in the building as well, from Public Health and Lands and Minerals. "This is going to be more than a public works building. It's going to be the service center for the northern tier, a very important part of St. Louis County," added Gray.

The county expects the facility to be open in late fall of 2019.


Renee Passal

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