By Matt Miller
Williamston Post Staff Writer
Police Chief Bob Young said, “there has been a signed purchase agreement, but there has been no closing,” regarding the sale of the old police station located at 1500 W. Grand River Ave. To Young, the current police station is functional, but he would prefer to be downtown so the police station is more accessible to the public.
Young said the current police station is old and run down, but still meets the police force’s needs. However, he said that a police station should be located downtown, especially in a city the size of Williamston.
The city is ready to build the new station, but construction cannot begin until the old building has been sold. According to City Manager Alan Dolley, the greatest challenge the city is facing is construction costs, which he believes may be higher this year. Dolley said that the sale of the building, it is taking longer than hoped. He said, “the gentleman that is trying to develop that site has hoops he has to jump through to meet his financing requirements.”
According to Dolley, the new police station will be located on Cedar Street and Grand River Avenue. Dolley said that this location was chosen because the old police station was there, before a tornado damaged it.
The original plan was to attach the new police station to city hall, said Dolley, However, this would cost too much. Young said he would rather have the police station and city hall separated. He said that it would be more secure the police station if they were together. In the original design, the police station and city hall shared an entrance and Young said that would cause problems should an incident happen in Williamston.
The station will be a one-story 4,000 square foot building. The new police station will have the same facilities as the old police station. It will include storage rooms for the evidence and weapons, a lobby, offices, garages and a room for officers to write reports.
Dolley said building the new police currently will cost the city approximately $470,000.