Demolition makes way for new Okaloosa County Building in Shalimar

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SHALIMAR "Eglin Air Force base, of course one of the largest, the largest land area base in the world separates both business ends of the county, you may say, so it is necessary to have two facilities,” said Okaloosa County Chairman Kelly Windes.

Crestview already has the first centralized county office building.

However, for the southern half of the county, that so called centralized facility is spread out among many municipalities.

The county spends hundreds of thousands of dollars on rent to house these different county departments, so building one consolidated facility makes sense.

This project will cost Okaloosa County Officials close to $11 million, luckily the county has that money to go towards this new facility.

"There is probably about a million a year in savings that we will realize once we discontinue renting space. Then that money will be used to service the debt with the money we have to bond in the debt service,” said County Administrator Ernie Padgett.

Okaloosa County Commissioners have been working on this plan for months.

Officials feel the older building didn't have the proper requirements needed.

The new facility will be three stories high, it will be 63,000 square feet, and have over 100 parking spaces.

"It will be more of a consolidation effort, easier on the customer and the employees."

The money used for rent comes from the general revenue funds, which the county budgets out every year.

County officials expect the building to be complete in 14 months.