NEW! Question and Answer Section for the Police Facility Space Needs Analysis
Questions (as of November 19, 2015). Responses posted on November 30 and are in italics.
1. At the meeting it was suggested that financing for a new or rehabbed police station could be a bond issue. Is the goal to get this on the April ballot?
2. When does the location of a new station get recommended? Does Council vote on the real estate BEFORE you have a facility for it, or is it all done at once?
If construction of a new station is the selected option, the location will be considered before the City "has a facility for it" (since the facility would be new construction vs reuse of a building). A location would be proposed for "testing" and due diligence after the option is selected. A suitable site will be identified for City Council consideration and vote.
3. Have you begun speaking/communication (phone, email, meetings, letter) with organizations in consideration of financing possibilities?
Yes -- various federal and state organizations and experts in public financing were contacted. Information on possibilities is being gathered.
4. Will you provide a list of ALL the financing/bonding/loan options available to the City for this type of Capital Improvement?
Options continue to be explored. There are several known funding mechanisms, some of which may be eliminated from consideration. If the questioner is seeking details regarding a specific option, or has a suggestion, please contact staff.
5. Please explain or provide the "Building" needs details of Senate Bill 5 as the driver in the Police station?
SB 5 reinforces the need for a new or renovated Police Facility and places a time constraint upon the City within which to obtain Police Department accreditation. However, SB 5 is not the sole driver mandating action. Something must be accomplished as soon as possible because the current Police Department facility (City Hall Annex) does not meet current building and environmental codes, is structurally unsound and is a safety and security risk. In addition to these physical concerns, the building configuration with divisions spread out on three floors makes proper operations impossible.
SB 5 has specific requirements for prisoner custody and care, separate and adequate training space, information security (public lobby area separate from other municipal functions), and evidence processing (booking, etc.). The Annex cannot meet SB 5 requirements in its current condition.
6. What did Chiodini find or report on the Operations of the Police station?
As a clarification, the study scope did not include procedural evaluations. However, from a strictly operational standpoint the police operational efficiencies are negatively impacted by lack of proper adjacencies – affecting normal work flow, lack of proper police/public/prisoner security separations – unsafe work environment, lack of consolidated prisoner processing, lack of secure prisoner transport to holding cells, lack of consolidated evidence processing, and an unhealthy building environment – water infiltration, mold, mildew, antiquated/inadequate building systems, etc.
7. How will the $500k allocated to temporarily fix the environment of the existing police station affect this plan?
Projects to be accomplished with the $500,000 allocated by City Council will help improve the unsafe working environment of the building for existing staff. These projects include extensive mechanical duct cleaning and repair, weatherizing the exterior of the building, and bathroom repairs. The work is necessary to address deferred maintenance items and will have a positive impact on any future plans for the building.
8. Did you consider adding a parking structure or garage to the rehab project?
Yes, parking structures were discussed for the rehab scenario and "tested" in various locations. For example, the west side of the property adjacent to Princeton/Trinity avenues was explored but deemed inadequate in size for an efficient parking structure. The appropriateness of the location adjacent to a residential neighborhood was also questioned.
The parking lot to the north of the Annex and owned by the School District was explored. The School District currently has identified another use for the property.
9. What else was planned for the Old Library for community use, or was the design 100% Police station use?
For purposes of this study, the old Library was considered for Police Department use only.
10. For the architects: In reviewing all of the Police stations they have designed, how many have had the number of staff (83 - 96 officers, civilians, administration, evidence, storage, locker rooms, etc) Municipal Court, and parking? Not City Hall or Municipal Administration facilities, but a full functioning stand alone police station with a jail?
Chiodini/Redstone have designed ‘police only’ stations for forces ranging from just under 40 total staffing to 300 total staffing. Programming including a municipal court or without is about 50/50; those with municipal court have sites designed to accommodate necessary parking for court sessions.
Every municipality’s/ community’s needs for public safety requirements differ; therefore, we have been involved in the planning of just about every conceivable configuration: City Hall/Police, Police/Fire/Ambulance, multiple-community consolidated facilities, with an without municipal courts, council chamber/municipal court combined facilities, etc.
Although many city halls and police departments are in joint facilities; given safety/security concerns, these police departments are still design as autonomous, independent facilities – separate secure parking, separate secure entries, separate public entries. Joint facilities are usually connected to the main lobby only; connection is closed after hours and the free-standing police entry is then used.
11. Why was the cost per square foot for new construction reduced from what was presented in earlier materials?
The overall square footage was reduced through an iterative process. The overall program was downsized and therefore the cost per square foot was refined and reduced.
12. The most recent information regarding the Annex renovation option presented a smaller addition concept. Was a site concept plan prepared that visually depicts the new smaller space? With the smaller addition, there might be room for additional parking or parking garage. Has any thought been given to that?
A smaller addition to the Annex could allow room for additional parking or a larger parking garage. This was considered, but a site concept plan that visually depicts this was not developed.