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Carbon building project officially closed out

Published September 21. 2019 07:40AM

A controversial building project on Susquehanna Street in Jim Thorpe scrapped last month by Carbon County commissioners is officially in the rearview mirror.

Commissioners on Thursday approved payments to three contractors for work already done on the project before plans were withdrawn.

The payments included $35,778.75 to J&R Slaw Inc., $4,465 to D&M Construction Unlimited, and $4,284.50 to Bracy Contracting.

“Though the contracts for the project were never formally approved, three of them required work to be done in advance of that to keep the project on the timeline,” county solicitor Daniel Miscavige said.

In April, the board canceled all contracts totaling $12.6 million for the project after borough residents filed a lawsuit against Jim Thorpe over its approval for the plans, which residents said could damage St. Mark’s and St. John’s Episcopal Church that is built into the mountain above the proposed building site.

The original project called for demolishing the former archives building and constructing a three-story, 66,279-square-foot building and parking garage next to the current 76 Susquehanna St. offices.

Jim Thorpe Borough officially acknowledged the withdrawal of land development plans at its council meeting in September.

“There were certain things that had to be initiated with rock removal and that sort of thing,” Miscavige said. “Slaw was doing concrete forms for the parking garage. These payments today are to fairly compensate those contractors for work they required to do, which they did complete.”

With November’s general election approaching, commissioners said they will let the new board, that is seated in January, decide on moving forward with creating additional space for the already cramped courthouse.

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