A report is recommending that a new building be constructed for the Estevan Police Service, rather than renovate the existing building at the intersection of Third Street and 11th Avenue.
Estevan city council received a needs assessment report, prepared by Rebanks Pepper Littlewood Architects, at Monday night’s council meeting. Police Chief Paul Ladouceur told council that this has been an ongoing discussion for the better part of a year and a half.
The current building was built about 60 years ago, and was renovated in 1991.
“There are several security deficiencies, as well as space deficiencies, that were noted, hampering performance and the ability to provide adequate protection to the citizens of Estevan,” Ladouceur said.
He stressed that the recommendation came from the architectural firm, and not the EPS.
The report indicated a projected cost of $9.9 million for a new police station.
Regardless of whether the existing building is renovated, or a new building is constructed, Ladouceur said anyone who has toured the facility has seen the constraints facing the police service.
“Someone at some point has to broach the topic of what we are doing moving forward,” said Ladouceur.
He also said the EPS and the Estevan board of police commissioners have had discussions on how they could bring down the cost of the project.
Councillor Dennis Moore was quick to voice support for the new police station, while Councillor Shelly Veroba said she thought constructing a second building, connected to the current building by a hallway, would be better.
Mayor Roy Ludwig also voiced support for an expansion of the present facility.
“The cost, in my opinion, (of a new building) was cost-prohibitive,” said Ludwig. “So that’s why I would rather see an expansion of the existing building. I think we can meet all the needs that have to be met by doing that.”
The report from Pepper Littlewood Architects was tabled to the 2019 budget deliberations.
This week’s edition of the Mercury will have more on this story.