By Jeffery Smith jsmith@the-leader.com

BATH - The ongoing construction of a new 30,000-square-foot building next to the Steuben County Office Building site, expected to open December 2018, is geared to address growing space needs.

Steuben County Manager Jack Wheeler said the completion of the $8.6 million project will accomplish a few things.

The three-story building will house frequently accessed records, the Steuben County Board of Elections and the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Steuben County, Wheeler said. The second-floor will also house a flexible conference room and a meeting space.

“This will open up more options for space at the current (office building),” Wheeler said. “The use of the third floor at the new building is yet to be determined.”

Wheeler said the new building will addresses immediate space issues.

“Specifically with the court space,” Wheeler said. “We’ve worked with the New York State Courts for years about the different (Steuben County) courtrooms. The space is not exactly adequate. The move of the departments and the use of the third-floor with will provide the flexibility to deal with some of those issues.”

Wheeler said when the building is completed and opens in late 2018, the parking at the site off East Morris Street, will remain “same space for space neutral.”

Edger Enterprises Inc., is the general contractor completing the project.

The county is also currently constructing an inactive storage building on Mount Washington Road to store Steuben County records that are not often used, Wheeler said. The majority of the county records will be housed at that site.