JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Delayed again. The new $350 million Duval County Courthouse was supposed to open its doors Tuesday. It is now Thursday and the building remains closed. And testing to the fire system scheduled to happen Thursday has also been postponed.
From his office just west of the new Duval County Courthouse, Mike Freed, head of Jacksonville's Bar Association, has been watching the progress. Slow and steady. Slow being the key word.
"Its frustrating. Its disruptive of the legal system," Freed said.
He, like many others, is getting anxious for those doors to finally open. But setback after setback, the building still sits empty.
"The fire protection systems are still not working together," explained Jacksonville City Councilman Bill Bishop. "And they can't make them work together. And all of the various combobulated things that they've been trying still aren't working."
Bishop says he's fed up too. The testing that was supposed to happen today has again been delayed.
"I don't have any confidence that its even remotely close to right yet."
He wants to know why the old Courthouse was shut down before the new one was ready. Taxpayers want to know when the building will finally open.
Action News called and emailed the Mayor to no avail today. It seems no one is getting any answers from the Mayor's office.
"The fact that we ask the question and don't get the answer is also a little disconcerting as to who does know the answer to this question? Someone needs to answer that over in the Mayor's office," Bishop said.
He isn't the only one who feels that way.
"There does not appear to be great communication between the Mayor's office and the court, the court system," Freed added. "And its such an important topic, its such an important issue, it relates to such a critical function."
So we asked Bishop how to fix the problem.
"Unfortunately that's not a problem I can fix. I can do a lot of things on the council but I can't run the Mayor's office. They're the only ones that can do that. They have to be held accountable for their own actions."
Bishop says he's meeting with the fire inspection folks himself Thursday to try to get some answers.
Freed says the good news is everything is already moved in so once the certificate of occupancy is issued, the opening should happen right away.
Freed adds the last update they received is that it won't open this week. He is hoping for next but no indication that will happen.