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Madison County Services Center exceeds expectations

For many residents of Madison County, the new Services Center has been a blessing. The center has pulled many of the public-facing services for the county government away from the courthouse into a new building at the intersection of North Memorial Parkway and Oakwood Avenue.

What that has meant for the citizenry is quicker searches for parking spaces and shorter wait lines to serve residents.

The Madison County Service Center is now home to the following Madison County Departments: License Department; Probate Judge; Sales Tax; Tax Assessor; Tax Collector and Voter Registration.

The center opened a year ago, and data reveals both less frustration with ample parking and more convenience to conduct business with Madison County.

Since that opening, more than 200,000 citizens have been served at the center during the past 12 months. Of that total, 74% had to wait 10 minutes or less to carry out their interaction with county government.

The Madison County Commission worked to identify a suitable location in central Madison County with a focus on a convenient location for Madison County residents. The site was acquired in August 2019 and a ground-breaking ceremony was held in October 2020. Construction on the facility took slightly more than a year and the doors opened March 1, 2021. The facility came in under budget and construction was finished in less than anticipated, quite a feat with the pandemic causing delays in many other construction projects.

The 60,000-square-foot building sits on a 7.7-acre site and will accommodate 350 cars, which reduced frustration for residents. In the past, the residents would have to search for spaces in downtown parking decks or take their chance to find an open spot on a downtown street and risk getting parking tickets. Parking at the new site is not only ample but free as well.

The single location is not only more convenient but it is also saving taxpayer dollars, according to Madison County Commission chairman Dale Strong. “The single location reduces multiple rental costs for the county. Relocating the county’s services from the courthouse to this new center has exceeded everyone’s expectations.”

Strong met with the departments to incorporate specific needs from the very
beginning. That input resulted in a more efficient operation Strong said. The departments with the most interaction with the public were located on the first floor and customers sign in at a custom designed queuing kiosk and wait in lobby seats until their number is announced. That is a welcome addition unlike having to stand in line at the courthouse.

Security was an important factor in the design as everyone must walk through a metal
detector and have their belongings scanned through a screening system. Cameras are installed throughout the facility and site.

Ray Garner is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News.

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