Renovations to the Belk Building in uptown Wadesboro are “about 95-98 percent done,” according to county director of buildings maintenance and parks and recreation Jeff Waisner.
Work on the building, which houses the county’s child support services, veterans services and probation office, began in the summer of 2012.
Gray panels had covered the building’s facade since the 1950s. The renovation called for the removal of the panels and the restoration of the building’s original brick work and arched windows.
Metal roof awnings were also added to the first floor windows. The word “Belk’s” will remain at the top of the building, but Waisner said it will be painted so the letters mirror those on the Anson County Courthouse across the street.
The courthouse itself has been part of an 18-month, $1 million project. Most of the exterior renovations are complete, Waisner said, except for “a couple of little projects.”
The interior of the 100-year-old courthouse has been the focus for much of the past year. The changes to the inside of the building start with the front lobby, which has been painted. “This used to be a green color, but we changed it to white so it’s more historically correct,” Waisner said.
All of the original wood work remains and will be cleaned and varnished. The tile floor also needs an overhaul, as most of its original white grout has turned black. “The floors will be stripped, and hopefully we can bring them back to their original shine,” Waisner said.
The Clerk of Court’s office on the first floor has been completely renovated — with new ceramic tile floors, refurbished wood work and the replacement of its old metal filing system with dark wood shelves that match the building’s original wood frame windows and doors.
All of the heating and air conditioning conduits used to be visible near the ceiling, Waisner said. That has all been removed and hidden, as well.
The floor also used to be raised 10 inches to allow for computer wiring to flow underneath. That problem has been corrected, Waisner said.
“Hopefully, next year, we can redo the second floor if the budget money is appropriated,” he said.