Construction on Ford County's new law enforcement center is about 65 percent complete and will likely be finished before the deadline arrives, the president of Timberlake Construction said Monday.


   Construction on Ford County's new law enforcement center is about 65 percent complete and will likely be finished before the deadline arrives, the president of Timberlake Construction said Monday.
    "We made some good progress for a long period of time," Bryan Timberlake told the audience. "We are quite a bit ahead of our projected schedule right now. There's still a lot of work that has to happen."
    Timberlake Construction hosted the meeting at Casey's Cowtown Club to update Dodge City and Ford County officials on the company's progress on the law enforcement center.
    The company is expected to complete the new law enforcement center by Oct. 1 and turn it over to the county by Dec. 1. The 60-day window will give the company time to train center's officials on running the building.
    The finished jail will have space for 240 general-population beds and 20 beds plus institutional areas, including a padded holding cell and onsite dental and medical rooms, according to Timberlake Construction's Web site. The detention area is designed in a pod system, with 44 pods containing six day rooms each.
    The building, which consists of the jail only, is located on an 11-acre site at 113 Road and Comanche Street.
    Timberlake told the Globe that the construction budget for the law enforcement center is set at $19.5 million, and he expected that it would come in either at that amount or slightly lower. That figure does not include the cost of furnishing and equipping the building, which will likely come out of the county's gueneral fund.
    The county has capped the cost of building the law enforcement center at $21 million.
    Jail administrator Capt. Ruth Divelbiss told the Globe that she is looking forward to moving into the new building.
    "We'll have a lot more room," she said. "It'll be a better working environment for the officers, and it'll be safer for the inmates and for the public."

    Reach Eric Swanson at (620) 408-9917 or e-mail him at eric.swanson@dodgeglobe.com.