CHESTER -- With the new year approaching, many Chester County government offices are preparing to move from downtown Chester to the R. Carlisle Roddey office complex at 1476 J.A. Cochran Bypass.
Some departments already have moved, including the county supervisor's office, the first one to go earlier this month.
"Wonderful," Chester County Supervisor Carlisle Roddey said of the transition progress. "There's people coming in here wanting to pay their taxes right now, and we have to turn them around and send them back to the courthouse. And they leave out of here muttering because they don't want to have to go up there and fight (to find) a place to park."
To avoid any confusion, here's a list of county offices, where they are and an estimate about when they'll move:
• The county's finance, human resources, risk management and purchasing departments already have moved to the Roddey building, along with the recycling coordinator.
• The probate judge is moving to the complex Thursday and Friday and that office should be open by Jan. 7.
• The offices of the treasurer, auditor and tax collector will move sometime after Jan. 15, transitioning with the tax season.
• The coroner, tax assessor and the building and zoning department will move by Feb. 1.
• The Chester County Council already is meeting at the council chambers inside the complex.
In June, the County Council took its first vote on borrowing $1.4 million to buy the building and $50,000 for its contents. Roddey signed a contract in September to purchase the 29,580-square-foot building from Omnova Solutions.
Citing concerns about limited office space, county leaders said the Omnova facility would ease their growing pains and allow residents to handle lots of business in one place.
The facility, which was once a school, sits on about 7 1/2 acres, contains some 60 offices and 122 parking spaces. County officials have said constructing a new facility would cost millions more than buying the Omnova property.
Leaders plan to move all the departments housed in the Chester County Courthouse to the Roddey complex, with the exception of the clerk of court's office.
Leaders hope to have an open house for the building in early February.