TULSA, Oklahoma - Demolition is underway on the future site of Tulsa County's Family Center for Juvenile Justice.

County leaders said the current building on Gilcrease Museum Road is overcrowded and outdated.

Employees cheered when they found out demolition started on the new building.

The sound of construction crews is like music to Justin Jones, Tulsa County Juvenile Bureau director.

"We're looking forward to not only the additional space, but modern space," Jones said.

He said plans for a new building have been in the works for years.

And this demolition is a long time coming.
"Having a new location with all the modern technology that's somewhat user-friendly with more space, more program space, mediation rooms," Jones said.

Last year, county leaders thought about building in north Tulsa, but after some blowback, settled on the Brady District downtown.

The county bought the seven-acre property from Storey Wrecker near Archer and Guthrie for Just more than $5.5 million dollars.

Plenty of room for new Family Center for Juvenile Justice, which will have twice the square footage of the current building.

Jones said his staff ran out of space long ago.

"We've converted bathrooms to offices, we have converted closets into offices," he said.

The new building will be two stories tall with more courtrooms, more storage space for court documents, more waiting rooms and more parking spaces.

It will also add six beds to the juvenile detention holding area.

"A lot of families and children are traumatized for whatever reason that they're here," Jones said. "And being able to reduce that trauma is important to us."

The new facility should open in early 2019.