City planning to construct new Public Safety Complex
Police HQ, Fire Station, Municipal Court to be included
MELISSA (May 27, 2021) Fully mindful that a growing community like Melissa requires public safety capabilities that evenly match the needs of its expanding population and escalating commercial base, the City Council has moved ahead with the design phase of a Public Safety Complex.
Last month, the Council authorized City Manager Jason Little to enter into an agreement with Ron Hobbs Architects whereby the architectural firm would design a facility to serve as Police Department Headquarters, a Central Fire Station, Municipal Court, and the accompanying administrative office space.
The architectural firm, which in the past has developed the City Hall interior design, the remodeling of City Hall, and the remodeling of the Fire Station, is expected to present several designs, based on the current and future needs of Melissa’s first responders. Hobbs and his team have designed close to a dozen public safety complexes, and a similar number of fire stations throughout the state. Staff will review the design layouts and submit comments designed to “right size” the facility, providing the architect with their impressions regarding the relationship between space-needed and space-provided in the proposed facility.
With the acquisition of the former SteelFab location on SH 5, and because that location offers quick, easy access to all parts of the City, officials have deemed that space as the location for the facility. There is enough room at that location to allow for the structure, access driveways to SH 5 for fire and police vehicles, public parking, and future expansion.
Following agreement on the architect’s design, the City will move to the next phase which will include a Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR) contract for the construction. CMAR contracts are considered advantageous to the City since the construction contractor is involved in all phases of the work, and the contractor assumes risk on any overruns beyond the agreed maximum costs of the project. At the May 25 City Council meeting, Crossland Construction was selected to serve in the CMAR role.
“Our first commitment to the residents of our community is to provide a safe, secure environment,” said Little. “Providing the appropriate level of police and fire protection is the cornerstone of our relationship with residents, businesses, visitors, and potential neighbors.” In a demonstration of that commitment, the City recently took delivery of a state-of-the-art ladder fire truck, a firefighting apparatus that features a built-in ladder capable of fighting fires from a height of two-stories.
“Providing the tools, training, and resources our first responders need in order to do their jobs is vital,” added Little. “The devotion they demonstrate to their profession, as well as the time, effort, and energy they put into staying ready to respond at a moment’s notice, are evident each and every day. Melissa residents can confidently depend on these men and women for their safety and security.”
Plans for the current Fire Station, once construction of the Public Safety Complex is complete, call for the building to be retrofitted to accommodate the various divisions of the Public Works Department.