Exterior demolition underway at old Johnson County Courthouse in Olathe

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OLATHE, Kan. — Exterior demolition work is now underway at the old Johnson County courthouse in Olathe.

Work on the old building has been going on for weeks. Back in March, the county started putting barriers and fencing up around the building before turning off the utilities. Then they handed the site over to construction company JE Dunn.

Crews have been working on interior demolition since April, but they’ve recently started on exterior work as walls start coming down. Workers have been trying to contain asbestos and clean up all the materials that can be recycled.

It’s a costly and long process. Johnson County is spending about $3 million on the entire project. Demolition will continue through July, and sidewalks around the perimeter of the old courthouse will be closed through October.

When it’s all done, though, officials plan to turn the space into the Johnson County Square, which will bring a new curved walkway linking the administration building and the new courthouse, lighting, a tree grove and landscaping to the area.

Crews finished the new Johnson County Courthouse, which sits just across Santa Fe Street, in early January after more than two years of construction. The $193 million, 350,000-square-foot building includes 28 courtrooms and more.

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