Hidalgo County judge addresses rumors of construction issues at new county courthouse
Construction issues continuing to delay the opening of the new Hidalgo County Courthouse that was scheduled to open at the start of 2023, according to Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez.
A preliminary report released by the courthouse's engineering firm confirmed more issues with the building.
“We knew that we had some roof issues, and we had some issues with our windows,” Cortez said, adding that all the issues were fixable.
“The report will be made public probably as early as next week, we're reviewing everything right now with our team,” Cortez added.
Despite the issues, Cortez said he wants to make one thing clear.
“The rumors that the courthouse is sinking and that we're going to have to destroy it are simply untrue and unfounded,” Cortez said. “I don't know why people do that."
The county previously announced they hired a San-Antonio based engineering firm to review the ongoing construction.
That assessment included visual, water and air inspections in different parts of the building that found moisture is present.
Almost $192 million has been spent on the construction project, with additional costs pending.
“Everything that can be done is being done,” Cortez said, “This is a huge investment for the taxpayers of Hidalgo County... We want to make sure that we are using all of our legal remedy to fix anything that needs to be fixed without having to use taxpayer money to do that."
Businesses owners near the new courthouse said they want the courthouse to open up soon.
“It's affected our ability to represent people because of the lack of parking,” attorney Ricardo Gonzalez said. “For one, when the courthouse broke ground, they started closing the parking spaces around us.”
Cortez says it could be anywhere between three and six months for the courthouse to open.
“We want to do it right,” Cortez said. “We're in a hurry to succeed, not in a hurry to fail."