Another article from our latest Informant newsletter discusses plans for a new police complex in the southern part of the city. To see more pictures, go to http://www.kcpd.org/ and scroll down to the bottom where it says "Watch our progress":
Twenty-five acres of land at Bannister Road and Marion Park Drive in South Kansas City will soon be home to multiple police operations and buildings.
The site will be home to the new South Patrol Division, but it also will house the new Special Operations Division, a new helicopter hangar, a multipurpose building, and possibly a property and evidence warehouse and a new, division-level building like a Crime Lab.
Major Jerry Gallagher, commander of the Facilities Management Division, said there were several reasons to put so many buildings on one site.
“One is the converging interstate system provides ready access,” he said. “And two, it’s just the opportunity of economies of scale. We can do more for less.”
The new South Patrol Division, Special Operations Division and multipurpose structures are being funded through the current quarter-cent public safety sales tax. That tax will sunset in 2011. The construction of another division-level building and property and evidence warehouse depends on whether voters choose to renew the tax.
Capital Improvements is moving forward with a design that would combine the South Patrol Division and Special Operations Division into one building. Major Gallagher said cost wasn’t the only factor in the decision to put the two together.
“The security of that police omnipresence will allow us to locate additional police facilities there in the future,” he said.
The multipurpose building would offer a place for department personnel to get physically fit with a full gym and aerobics and weight rooms.
“We’ve got great workout facilities at the Academy up north, and we wanted to offer something similar down south,” Officer Rhonda Schulte said.
But it will be much more than that. It will contain a briefing room for the Special Operations Division. A full-size basketball court will be designed with sliding doors to become part of the briefing room. The gym even could be a temporary shelter for residents in the event of a disaster.
The multipurpose building also will house the Bomb and Arson Unit, Canine Section, Retirement Office and be a satellite location for the Kansas City Police Credit Union. And it’s being designed to accommodate the mass dispensing of vaccines in the event of a pandemic.
Officers with KCPD’s Capital Improvements Unit met several times the past few months with architects, civil engineers, landscape architects and leaders of the City’s Capital Improvements Management Office to brainstorm the best layout of buildings on the triangular site. They’ve settled on a site plan that would have the SPD/SOD building facing the multipurpose building on a looped roadway. The helicopter hanger would be on an offshoot to the south. The site plan includes a Crime Lab and Property and Evidence warehouse on the loop, too, with parking in the middle.
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