December 20, 2012 | Vol. 39, No. 51

Petersburg police station site established

The Petersburg City Council approved the new location for the Petersburg Police Department unanimously Monday evening during its regular meeting. The new police facility will be located next to the fire hall on Haugen Drive but will not be connected as previously discussed.

This drawing depicts the location for the new police facility, on the townside of the fire hall on Haugen Drive

Two options for the police facility location were offered at a work session Monday afternoon with positive points along with both.

“With option one there would be less excavation and fill needed,” Wayne Jensen of Jensen, Yorba, Lott, Inc. said. “But there was a significant amount of money spent originally in the existing parking lot, landscaping and driveway. If we use option one we will have to take out most of that existing work and the money spent on that work would be lost.”

The landscaping that was completed cost approximately $90,000 and also about 400 to 500 lineal feet of curb and gutter would have to be removed.

According to Jensen, the paving that exists there is seven inch reinforced concrete and it would not be easy or cost effective to remove it.

The site improvement cost of option one at $1,236,000 is also significantly more than option two at $834,500.

“The fill will not be to the same elevation as the fire hall either,” Jensen explained. “The police facility will be built on two levels and this will make the excavation and fill less extensive.”

The discussion of added day rooms, which are open areas that are common rooms for all inmates to gather, in the new proposed facility caused some back and forth with the steering committee as well.

“I don't wish to provide inmates with anything more than what is constitutionally required,” Petersburg City Council Member John Hoag stated. “I also have some safety issues regarding the day rooms.”

The steering committee looked to the management and staff of the police department in deciding the design and layout of the building.

“We deferred to the staff and management as to the needs for the facility,” Police Facility Steering Committee member Debbie Downs said. “This is what our officers and police management teams say they need for control.”

Regardless of the need or desire for the added day rooms in the facility, the final decision will come down to funds.

“This issue will come down to budget,” Petersburg Police Chief Jim Agner said. “We, as a department, feel these rooms would be a help to us, but it will depend on the funding in the end.”

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