Weather Forecast


Courthouse remodeling shifts to second phase

Phase Two of the nearly $4 million remodeling project at the Otter Tail County Courthouse will get underway in July.

Workers will focus on renovations including significant remodeling of the second and third floors. The year-long Phase Two, extending through next June, also will include exterior masonry restoration, re-window work, skylight replacement, reroofing, piping demolition, boiler room prep, boiler replacement and landscaping.

At press time, Phase One was nearly complete. The project has included first floor work for sheriff’s department offices, including dispatch and jail administration. Sheriff’s offices and dispatch are temporarily located on the second floor of the courthouse.

The remodeling for Phase One also included second floor renovations for court administration and the addition of a new courtroom. County employees will have a secure judicial corridor and connection to the court functions on the third floor of the justice center.

Enhancements also will allow for a secure holding area and access to the county jail.

Located near the center of Fergus Falls and south of downtown, the courthouse was the seat of government in Otter Tail County from 1922 to 2003. The three-story cream colored brick and limestone building has been modified several times throughout its history.

The Otter Tail County Courthouse contains the law enforcement center, sheriff’s office, the county jail, three courtrooms, probation, administration and judicial offices.

Many of the county departments such as the audit and treasurer’s offices, plus license renewal centers, are now located at the County Government Services Center, on the northwest side of Fergus Falls.

Tom Hintgen, Otter Tail County Correspondent