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PHOENIX-The $91-million Maricopa County 4th Avenue Jail is on track with its construction schedule, says McCarthy Building Cos. Inc. Completion is set for July 2003.

The 577,000-sf jail is being built at 4th Avenue News and Madison in Phoenix. “We have an aggressive schedule to complete the project,” Jim Brandt, McCarthy’s project manager, says in a prepared statement.

The building design calls for steel panel demising walls that are two inches wide in comparison to the traditional six-inch wide concrete block walls. The innovative building method, says Heidi Birch, Maricopa County’s senior project manager for the job, will eliminate an entire floor in the structure. And, she adds, the walls are equally as secure as traditional construction.

The six-story project calls for one level below ground with a 300-foot tunnel linking the new jail to the courts and existing 960-bed Madison Street jail. Jail capacity will add 1,360 beds. The intake staff will be relocated to the new facility when it’s done.

McCarthy is the general contractor while the project manager is Hunt Jacobs of Phoenix. Durrant HOK of Phoenix designed the facility. McCarthy crews also are working on the Maricopa County Administration Building, Arizona State Behavioral Health Hospital and 91st Avenue waste water treatment plant.

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