Friday morning officials gathered in Mammoth Lakes to break ground on a new court building.
There are two superior courthouses in Mono County. The courthouse in Bridgeport is a striking piece of historic architecture, while the other court location is at the Sierra Center Mall in Mammoth Lakes. The new 20,000 square foot facility will replace the current court facility in Mammoth Lakes and is set to cost $21.5 million.
Administrative Office of the Courts officials found that the Mammoth court was undersized, in poor condition and needed to be replaced. The state study also found that 90% of the county’s civil and criminal workload comes from the Mammoth area. Court officials also say that the Bridgeport Courthouse is commonly used for arraignments because its across the street from the jail, but there are fewer than five trials a year in Bridgeport.
The population of Mammoth Lakes is around 7000 people, but can swell to 40,000 people on a busy winter weekend. Court officials say that most of the Mono County Superior Court case filings involve visitors.
The new two-courtroom facility is designed to be part of a larger government facility located at the corner of 203 and Sierra Park Road. This government center may someday include facilities for the Town of Mammoth Lakes, but for now the Administrative Office of the Courts is the first agency to come up with the money to build.
If all goes according to plan, the new court facility in Mammoth Lakes is set to be completed in the summer of 2011.