MILTON — The Santa Rosa County Board of County Commissioners during its March 14 regular commission meeting will take its next action on the courthouse, advertising for the design-build team for the new courthouse. If Commissioners follow through as expected, county staff will publish an RFQ by the end of March with a six-week response time.

"It’s going to be history-making in Santa Rosa County to get this project done," Commission Chairman Bob Cole said.

The Board agreed to move forward with the courthouse project via a progressive design-build project delivery. In this process, the design-builder delivers the project in phases.

In phase one, the design-builder and owner collaborate to create the project’s basis of design, programming requirements and then advance that design. In phase two, the design-builder will complete the design and construction of the facility in accordance with agreed commercial terms.

"I’m glad to know phasing idea was chairman’s idea," Commissioner Rob Williamson said. "I’m in favor of progressive design build because of options there…Let’s get this one step closer to this coming to reality."

The Commissioners voted to move voting on putting out the RFQ to Thursday’s regular agenda — not the consent agenda.

"It may stir some interest from the general public to make a few comments on it," Cole said. "I’m excited about moving forward. It’s something we needed for 20 years."

Cole also invited the design firm HOK, which the county previously used to design the new courthouse, into the current process.

"This is no reflection on past performance from HOK. They always did what we asked," Cole said. "They’re welcome to come into the fold and be part of bid process but think we’ve chosen the best route. We’re moving this thing forward with a brand new day."