Police Station and Municipal Court Planning
The City Council is in the process of working with the community to develop a plan to replace our current police station and municipal court. Coates Design will provide an update to the City Council during their Study Session on Tuesday, January 17. The discussion that evening will including results from the recently completed review of space needs analysis, and a discussion of potential sites and next steps.
Council approved a professional services agreement with Coates Design for Phase I design services during their meeting on Thursday, October 25. The scope of work includes, site evaluations, review of space needs analysis, and all design services.
During the meeting the Council also reduced the number of potential sites to four. Here is a brief explanation of the four sites still under consideration:
8954 Madison Avenue N
Site is located adjacent to SR 305 and access is available from Madison Avenue N, which is a controlled intersection. However, with current zoning lot coverage restrictions, the site may not be large enough to meet program needs. A variance or modification to zoning regulations may be required.
9657 NE Yaquina Avenue
Site is located adjacent to SR 305 and access is available from Madison Avenue N, which is a controlled intersection. Additional analysis would need to be conducted to determine if site is large enough to meet program needs, but initial review suggests that site is adequate.
Vineyard Lane Site
The site is located north of Vineyard Lane immediately east of SR 305. This site includes 3 parcels totaling 5.09 acres, which could be modified through lot line adjustments. Further analysis is recommended for this site since it has access to SR 305, is located very near the Winslow Mixed Use Area, and is believed to be large enough to accommodate program needs.
The Existing Site
In 2006, the Webber Study took a much closer look at the existing Police Station site. In fact, the purpose of the study was to determine if it is, in fact, feasible to develop a facility that accommodates the program. Although the 2006 program included a combined Municipal Court/Police facility, a police only facility will still face many of the same challenges (see Webber Study), including:
· Access to the site is difficult. The police operations and employee ingress and egress is located on Olympic Drive. The traffic design as it is shown in the site layout is not a good design and will likely be revised by the engineers or require expensive street-work such as additional left-turn lanes or other traffic mitigations.
· Development of off-site parking may require construction of new parking lots and underground stormwater detention on private property. It is not known whether the adjacent property owners would be cooperative. Underground stormwater detention is expensive.
· As an urban site, the stormwater detention on the site would need to be underground. A larger, suburban site could accommodate stormwater detention with a pond, rather than a tank, which is much less expensive.
· Underground parking and building areas would need to be built. Underground parking is much more costly than surface parking. Additionally, the cost of the building with underground parking is much more expensive than building at-grade.
· The site requires a multi-story building. Because of the security separations, the building will require separate, redundant, vertical circulation systems that would not be required in a building that is built at-grade.
· The police operations in the secure parking area are not optimal. The sally-port is a single-entrance sally-port. By definition, and for operations purposes, a sally-port should be designed so that cars enter the sally-port and drive forward through a second door to exit.
· There is no room on the site for any "public benefit" features.
Council had previously been considering four other sites including a site at 600 Erickson Avenue, but after further analysis, the site is no longer under consideration. In 1997, Miller/Hull Partnership conducted an analysis of the existing 600 Erickson Avenue building to determine its suitability to serve as a new City Hall. The analysis concluded that the building was in very good condition and high quality for a commercial office building, but would require significant structural enhancements to meet Essential Facilities requirements.
For a history of the decision-making process on this project please visit the
Police facility background page.
Why Does the Current Police Station Need to be Replaced?
In 2014, the City contracted with the Mackenzie firm to conduct a study of the current police and court facilities, and analyze potential options for replacement. The study found that the current facility is undersized and outdated for effective, modern law enforcement. There are numerous deficiencies, listed in the report below is a small sample:
Structural and Site deficiencies: Unreinforced masonry buildings like this one have proven to perform very poorly during seismic events. Additionally, the current site lacks sufficient space, has areas that are cramped and difficult to access, has unsecured parking, and has loose wiring for electricity and telecommunications that rests on the rooftop and is easily subject to tampering or damage from adjacent trees.
Evidence Storage: The evidence technician's desk is located within the evidence storage room, exposing the employee to constant interaction with potentially dangerous substances.
Records Archives: The archives room was the subject of a prior sewage leak, thankfully compromising only one bin of documents. The storage space is currently filled to capacity.
Interview Rooms: The interview rooms lack the proper technology to effectively record meetings and provide security and privacy for the police, victims, and suspects.
Toilet Room: Neither of the two restrooms are fully ADA compliant, one meets the spatial requirements, though it lacks the vertical grab bar necessary. Both are accessed through the public lobby and pose a security risk to officers and staff.