MUSCOGEE COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL)— The Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office is set to move to their new administrative building by the end of this year. WRBL got an exclusive walk-through of the new building.

“This building will be a landmark for the history of the Office of the Sheriff,” Muscogee County Sheriff Greg Countryman said.

The new administrative building for the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office was purchased in November of 2022. It’s a part of the relocation process for all employees housed inside of the Columbus Consolidated Government Center. Despite the plan to relocate everyone, Sheriff Countryman he says its due time for the new space.

“We have a chance now to have the room and the spacing for our property and evidence. We have outgrown what we have currently because of the high number of cases that we’ve been making,” Sheriff Countryman said. “And so being able to store the property and evidence, you know, will be excellent.”

Their administrative space will double in the new building which formerly housed TSYS Global Payments. In addition to housing property evidence in the building Sheriff Countryman says the additional square footage will allow them to house dispatch, investigators, training rooms and seminars, jail administration, the Sex Offenders Unit amongst other departments all under the same roof.

The three-floor building introduces new opportunities for the sheriff’s office to better support their staff offering ample room to host trainings, a childcare station, a lactation room for mothers, a health-food market, and much more.

“That is one thing I believe in wholeheartedly, and that is taking care of those that take care of you,” Sheriff Countryman said.

Following City Council’s approval, the city purchased the building on Nov. 1, 2022, for $2.525 million. Funding came from Columbus Building Authority Bonds and a local option sales tax (OLOST). Renovations were approved for $13 million, funds from Columbus Building Authority Bonds.

“We ended up saving millions of dollars by purchasing that building, renovating it, and then putting it to use for the for the for the sheriff,” Columbus Mayor Skip Henderson said. “In addition to that, we’ll add one extra court room just in case there’s some overflow from Recorders Court.”

The location is also optimal creating what both the mayor and sheriff describe as a ‘public safety quad.’

“This is great because we have a Public Safety Building for the Columbus Police Department, Fire & EMS and the Coroner’s Office. We can walk from here and go next door there or they can walk over here and see us. We have the jail. We can walk from here and walk to the jail,” Sheriff Countryman said. “The way that we have it set up now is more like a complex. We’ve never had this before. And so, I think that this is a win for all of the agencies.”

Sheriff Countryman said this will be the first time in Muscogee County history that the sheriff’s office has had its own separate administrative building.