Travis County Acquires 1930's U.S. Courthouse to House New Probate Court

Travis County's bid to acquire the historic Austin Federal Courthouse at 200 W. Eighth St. has finally pushed through. The deed was accepted Thursday at the courthouse steps by County Judge Sarah Eckhardt and other elected officials.

Eckhardt expressed that, “we have been hoping and praying for this gift from Uncle Sam for a while.” 

The building was previously declared by the federal government as a surplus, so county officials moved to have the property transferred under local jurisdiction, especially when a bond referendum for a new civil and family courtx complex failed in 2015. The Commissioners Court approved the application to have the said property obtained from the National Park Service for use by Travis County. Travis County was not required to pay any amount for obtaining the said property.

With a $28 million renovation plan for the historic structure, locals are eyeing the property as the new house of probate courts. The Heman Marion Sweatt County Courthouse has been in need for additional space for district courts for quite some time.

Travis County currently only has one probate judge, but with the renovation plans completed for the historic building by 2020, they are expected to open two more probate courts, and by 2035, two more. Probate court deals with wills, declaration of heirs for deceased people who die without a will, establishment of guardianships, court-ordered involuntary mental health commitments, and domain cases.

Want to know more about this awesome Austin local news? You can access Kelli Weldon's Community Impact article from which this post was based by clicking here.

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