Over the years, the current space has become too small. Built in the early 1980s, the building is beginning to show significant signs of age. The aging mechanical systems, and the size and configuration of the space simply don’t meet the needs of the department, or modern police department standards.
The Council Chambers and Municipal Court room are currently one in the same. At one time, each had a separate space within City Hall, as is the general standard. Due to a lack of space in the building, about 10 years ago the chambers and courtroom were combined into a multipurpose space. This creates challenges in both the scheduling and functionality of the room. Having court co-located with the new police station will be efficient for residents and visitors.
All available property within the city was reviewed and subsequently narrowed down to two viable options; the current civic center campus on 118th Avenue and Community Center Drive, and the area near the water towers on the Community Center Drive/112th Avenue overpass.
Based on safety considerations, site access, and the space needed, the site on Community Center Drive/112th Avenue was the most favorable. This site provides a centralized location for police services. The extra space gives us the added opportunity to make the new center pedestrian and neighborhood friendly.
One of the priorities in the design process for the facility is that construction and subsequent operations minimally impact the surrounding neighborhood.
Residents who live in the neighborhood were invited to a well-attended forum in November 2015. After listening to why a new facility is necessary, and how the city intends to create greater connectivity with the neighborhood, the reaction from those in attendance was positive and supportive.
$2.5M was earmarked for site analysis, the engineer’s estimate of probable cost, and architectural and engineering costs. The cost of the building is $18M; additional ancillary costs put the total in the $21 to $23M range.
The facility will be funded by city sales tax.
The court room will continue to be used for city council meetings, city events, and other meetings. We are looking at adaptive re-use of the area currently occupied by the Police Department.
The city does intend to build a new recreation center
on the land west of City Hall.
A new City Hall is being considered, but nothing has been decided yet.