At a time when Harris Teeter is selling some cartons of eggs for more than $9, it’s no surprise that a new headquarters for the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department is going to end up costing taxpayers a whole lot more than was expected when the new headquarters project was approved three years ago.
In March 2019, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners approved the “$12 million” project. According to information provided by the facilities department staff to the Guilford County Board of Commissioners this week, the project is now estimated to cost $23.9 million.
A report that Guilford County Facilities and Property Management Director Eric Hilton provided to the commissioners informed them of the bad news. Construction costs have been skyrocketing, and the project – which involves the demolition of the old county jail in downtown Greensboro and the construction of the new headquarters in its place – is going to cost a lot more than planned.
In the information presented this week to the commissioners, Hilton notes that inflation is still driving prices higher and he gave numerous reasons why the county can expect to pay more.
According to Hilton, commercial office construction costs rose 23 percent in 2021 and 21 percent in 2022.
Also, new industrial construction costs were up nearly 22 percent in 2022, and the cost of new school construction increased by 17.7 percent last year.
About the only good news in Hilton’s report to the board is that the cost of metals –such as copper, steel and aluminum – fell by 10 percent to 20 percent in 2022. Other raw materials and items used in construction, however, went up.
Hilton cites concrete, insulation and gypsum board products as examples. Last year, the prices of those materials rose 12 percent, 14 percent and 18 percent respectively.