Ellis County Partners with Kitchell/HOK for Long-Term Planning

Ellis County building
Ellis County looks to update its facilities for a growing population Photo credit Corey Rogan

Ellis County Population Projected To Grow Rapidly

Ellis County, TX – On Tuesday, May 18th, the Ellis County Commissioner’s Court voted to enter a $316,996 professional services agreement with Kitchell, a professional building services firm who, with their partner HOK a design firm, will provide long-range (long-term) planning, conduct an existing facilities needs assessment, and provide construction management services. The agreement will help the county determine what kinds of facilities improvements may be necessary and develop a long-term plan to implement those improvements. Public meetings and information sessions will be forthcoming later this year to share planning information and gain input from citizens.

In March, Kitchell was chosen from among 14 professional firms to assist Ellis County with long-term construction planning. Ellis County’s population is projected to grow rapidly in the coming years, with voters recently approving Tier 2 – a policy that may slow the territorial expansion of cities by requiring municipal annexations to be voluntary. For citizens living outside city limits in rural or unincorporated communities, the county government will continue to provide public services for a growing population.

The agreement will provide Ellis County with three primary services: long-range planning, an existing facilities needs assessment, and construction management services. During long-range planning, all major county departments – from the courts to the jail, and from the tax office to emergency management – will be evaluated to develop an action plan addressing the county’s future facilities needs. During the existing facilities needs assessment, county departments will be able to incorporate potential improvements of existing facilities into the action plan. Lastly, Kitchell will provide the county with construction management services to plan new and updated architecture, procure contractors, and oversee the construction process on-site.

The agreement between Ellis County and Kitchell will go into effect immediately upon being signed, and it will continue until all analysis and construction services have been performed.