Expansion moves Clinton Public Works across street

Chris Berendt Staff Writer

January 7, 2014

The City of Clinton Public Works and Utilities headquarters on John Street is expanding as part of a half-million dollar renovation project, and all services will be housed just across the street for the next six months.

Signs were placed at both locations Monday to direct all customers to the right place. The temporary location is located a stone’s throw on adjacent Ferrell Street.

“The Clinton Public Works Department will be undergoing renovations for the next six months,” a notice by the City of Clinton stated. “During this time, Public Works will be located at 215 Ferrell St.”

The transition affected some operations, including phone service, Monday, but Public Works officials said everything should be back to normal by late Tuesday.

“Our phones should be working by late tomorrow,” Stacey Ray, senior administrative specialist for the City of Clinton’s Public Works, said Monday.

Public Works director Jeff Vreugdenhil said the department will have its same number, at 910-299-4905, and everyone will have their same extensions. The hours will remain the same, from 7 a.m,-3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

“All of our offices except the garage will be at the new location, at 215 Ferrell St.,” said Ray. “We are figuring (to be displaced for) about six months.”

The renovation and expansion project for the Public Works facility will is anticipated to extend its life by decades. The current facility, located at 200 John St., is over 40 years old and in need of maintenance, repairs and updating, including the roof, Vreugdenhil said.

In November, the City Council approved a proposal of $561,500 from Jackson Builders of Goldsboro to do the work. Considered for the last several years, $500,000 was budgeted this year (2013-14) for those upgrades.

The last addition to the Public Works complex was in 1972.

The Public Works facility renovations will see the expansion of the break room and restroom facilities and a re-design of the office space in existing offices to accommodate three offices and a receiving area. The project is expected to accommodate the office and break room needs for the next several decades, as current employee numbers are within 10 percent of what they were in 1990.

Brick veneer on 75 linear feet of wall, versus metal siding, is also included in the project, as well as the addition of painting the attached garage portion, which Vreugdenhil said is “significant in size.”

With a small percentage of contingency funds added to the base amount, the cost would hover around $580,000.

“It will be a significant addition,” said Vreugdenhil.

The renovations will expand the area parallel to Vreugdenhil’s office near the entrance of the building, which is essentially in a breezeway, where visitors have to step outside to go into the other part of the building that includes the cafeteria and a small reception area. The receptionist area would be expanded, allowing for a new visitor’s lounge and a bigger lunchroom.

Expanding the break room and restroom facilities is also expected to better accommodate employees and present a more sanitary environment, where there is enough room to wash up in the restroom rather than utilizing common areas.

The proposal includes new roofing of the entire facility, excluding the garage portion.

“It is a complete roof overhaul,” said Vreugdenhil.

“It’s 4,500 feet of either addition or renovation,” City manager Shawn Purvis has said. “We’re talking 30 years of extension on the life of this building.”

Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at