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Public safety building opens with ribbon-cutting

By Staff | Aug 25, 2009

The Cape Coral Police Department unveiled its $21.6 million public safety building Monday during a ribbon-cutting ceremony that brought out city dignitaries past and present.
The 100,000-square-foot facility, located across from City Hall on Cultural Park Boulevard, replaces the current 38,000-square-foot building at 815 Nicholas Parkway.
Though the majority of the police department will move into the new facility over the next few weeks, 911 operations has been utilizing the building since July.
Mayor Jim Burch said the police department sorely needed to upgrade its facility.
“The people who lay their lives on the line on a daily basis certainly needed something better (than the old building),” he said.
The new building is a culmination of years of debate regarding where the facility should be built, its size and what it would need to be considered one of the top-notch law enforcement facilities in the county, if not the state.
Built to withstand Category 5 hurricane force winds, the new building boasts additional evidence storage, police lockers, showers, holding areas and an expanded forensics laboratory, not to mention the overall square footage is nearly triple that of the old police building.
Charlene Campbell, who served on the Citizens Advisory Committee, said she is proud to finally see the building unveiled.
The CAC was instrumental in helping to choose the location and amenities within the new police headquarters.
Campbell said the building’s location was a mystery for some time, and that she traveled to many other police stations to get some ideas about what the Cape would need.
“We looked at all kinds of options,” she said. “Every time we would hear of something we would go check it out.”
Ground was broken on the project just under a year ago.
Throughout the planning process the project’s budget shot upward of $100 million, though the final price tag was far from that figure.
Police Chief Rob Petrovich thanked everyone who supported and fought for the building throughout the process.
“I believe this is the gem of the city,” he said, “something we can all be proud of.”