New township police facility architect named
11/29/2016 11:25AM ● Published by Richard Gaw
Tevebaugh Associates, a Wilmington-based architectural firm, has been selected as the architect for the new police station being planned for New Garden Township. The announcement was made at the township's board of supervisors meeting on Nov. 21.
The cost to the township for design will be $294,250. Tevebaugh Associates was the lowest among four firms who bid on the project.
The firm has designed several academic, healthcare and public and institutional buildings, including several that dot the downtown Wilmington skyline. The firm is very familiar with creating law enforcement facilities, which include the new, 22,000-square-foot police station in Rehoboth, Del. The free standing building provides detention facilities, a fully enclosed sally port, secure evidence storage, investigation and storage, locker and training room facilities for officers and staff.
The announcement arrives at a time when the new Southern Chester County Regional Police Department – which merges the New Garden and West Grove Bough forces into one unit – is expected to begin operations on Jan. 2, 2017.
The idea to construct a new and expanded police facility in New Garden has been on the discussion table for many years in the township, a concept that was been kicked up in urgency after the closing of the long-time barracks on Gap-Newport Pike were shut down after mold infestation was detected. Since that time, the unit has been housed in an 1,100 square-foot makeshift of interconnected trailers. Though functional, tcurrent location does not provide for proper holding area space.
With Detroit-based architect Daniel Redstone at his side, Gerald Simpson, the new chief for the department, unveiled the blueprint and needs assessment for a planned 19,500 square-foot police barracks before the supervisors on April 25.
The facility would provide the new regional department with a greatly improved work flow space, and would include expanded holding areas; a sally port to usher prisoners into holding areas; offices for detectives and police administration offices, including a space for record storage; a property room; public entrance and public areas; a staff training room; both mens' and womens' locker room areas; and expanded parking areas for both police and the public.
Redstone told the township's supervisors that a police facility of this kind would cost between $6.5 million and $7.5 million – about $300 per square feet – if the project were to begin in 2017. The lifespan of the facility, Redstone said, could last as long as 40 years.
While both appointed and elected township officials have agreed with Simpson that a new, larger police facility is crucial, the concept had for years been met with the roadblock of how to pay for it. The solution arrived on Aug. 15, when supervisors gave final and unanimous approval to the sale of the township's sewer system to Aqua Pennsylvania Wastewater, Inc. (Aqua) for the price of $29.5 million.
Proceeds from the sale are expected to go into the construction of the new police facility.
In other police news, the board approved the promotion of Officer Stephen Madonna from part-time status to a full-time officer. He will replace Officer Kristen Menna, who recently left the department for a position in the private sector.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.