By Lucas Vader
In recent times, Delta Police Chief Luke Fedler has brought to public’s and council’s attention that the Delta Police Department (DPD) has outgrown its little station on Fifth Street.
With that, there has been a determined need for a new facility, as the current one has no viable options for expansion.
With this considered, at its Oct. 6 regular meeting, the Delta City Council approved a $55,525 contract with TreanorHL in order to determine the needs of the new department, including but not limited to space needs and optimal location, complete with a concept design for the new facility.
Delta Public Works Director Betsy Suerth said, “Over the past 10 years, our police force has grown by just under 25% to 25 full-time personnel, and with that, there’s been no increase in our facility space to accommodate that growth, and new state mandated regulations for retention of data and evidence has placed additional space needs and burden on their department.”
Also, Suerth noted that the city reorganization, which had the Delta Police Department take on animal control and code enforcement, creates an additional expectation on the one-story station of about 5200 square feet total. According to Suerth, they have a storage shed in the back and two garage bays at the public works location. With current mandates, those are full of evidence, and there are additional storage bins at the public works location.
“They really are busting at the seams,” Suerth said. Also, she stated that the parking is inadequate.
With that, they approved the contract with TreanorHL, with a discretionary contingency amount of $8,300 for the completion of all the analysis and the concept design. TreanorHL would, as part of that contract, provide a cost estimate for the new station.
The 2020 budget adequately covers the cost of the study, which would allegedly take about six months. The budget includes $100,000 for facility studies for the public works locations and the police department, so the contract falls within budgetary constraints.
Already, three potential locations for the new department have been addressed. One is the old county work release building area, which has been discussed as a trade with the county in the past, according to Suerth. Another option is the city-owned lot by Delta Family Fun Park, the mini-golf course in the Confluence area. The third location brought up by Suerth is horse country.
Fedler said his favorite of the three locations would be the lot by Delta Family Fun Park due to optimal location and quick access to any part of the city. He admitted, however, that it may not be big enough and that he would be wary of ambush opportunities from higher ground on the overpass.
Overall, Fedler vouched for the need for the contract, saying it was an important move in ensuring that the next police station serves them adequately into the future.
“Yes, I have a concept in my head, but I’m a cop,” Fedler said. “This is not what I’m trained for. We need a professional.” Fedler said that TreanorHL will project 20 years into the future for the needs of the police department.
With TreanorHL’s part in the process of constructing a new police station, the motion to approve the contract passed unanimously with the council.