PARIS — Construction at the Oxford County Superior Courthouse could become a hindrance during jury selection days in January and March, according to Assistant District Attorney Richard Beauchesne.

Beauchesne raised the concern at Tuesday morning’s meeting of the Oxford County Commissioners.

The expansion is part of a $90 million package approved by the Maine Legislature to make courthouses in Oxford, Waldo and York counties more secure.

Plans for the project include construction of a two-story, 11,000-square-foot addition to the courthouse, renovations to the interior of the building, a $30,000 metal-detection system and extensive reconfiguration of traffic flow and parking areas at the county campus on Western Avenue.

Work on the project began in April and is expected to be completed by May 2020.

Beauchesne said jury selection is held once a day on odd-numbered months.

“On days that we have jury selection, we have 80 to 100 more cars parking here, and that’s a conservative estimate,” he said.

“With the work being done around the courthouse, the limited number of parking spaces we have across the street won’t cover everyone. Who knows where the overflow will end up?”

County Administrator Tom Winsor suggested the court hold jury selection over two days, rather than one, while Register of Deeds Pat Shearman said the Franklin County District Attorney’s Office could contact Western Maine Transportation and see if it could bus people to and from the courthouse from a different location.

“We’ll make sure to figure it out before jury selection,” Winsor said.

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