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Projects underway in downtown Jonesborough

Work on the public restrooms behind Jonesborough’s Main Street courthouse continues and Town officials expect the facilities to be up and running by spring.
As of last week, employees were laying one set of block on the bathrooms and when that task is done, will put the roof on, said Mayor Kelly Wolfe.
“Then they’ll begin working on the inside,” he said. “It looks like we’re on track to finish by the end of March.”
Town employees are also digging several ditches for underground utilities for both the bathrooms and parking lot lights, which will provide more decorative lighting as well as added security and aesthetics, Wolfe said.
When temperatures start to warm up, and the threat of snow finally vanishes, the next step for the courthouse renovation project will be paving the parking lot, laying curb and beginning landscaping.
Another Town project, the conversion of the old Booker T. Washington School into the McKinney Center, is moving along with some help from the state.
Town Administrator Bob Browning and Wolfe traveled to Nashville last week to meet with officials about a $100,000 Community Development Block Grant to make the school/arts center energy efficient as it is renovated.
The money, from stimulus funds, will go toward geothermal heat and air systems, energy efficient windows, and some insulation of solar shingles.
The Town is planning an “open house” at the school in a couple of weeks so those interested can see the interior, now that it is all cleaned out, Wolfe said.
After that, “we’ve got to come up with a layout based on what we’re going to do in there,” Wolfe said. “And we’ve got to find a funding mechanism.”