Construction of Wildwood’s new police station has begun with completion expected next July.
City commissioners Monday approved the first payment of $298,725 to Charles Perry Partners, the construction manager at risk. The project on 6.7 acres at the southwest corner of U.S. 301 and County Road 462 West is expected to cost about $7 million.
Site work and building the foundation for the 14,104-square-foot building are in process.
In June, commissioners approved a site plan for the project, which also includes paved parking and a driveway.
The building will be topped out by late October, according to the construction schedule, with a final inspection slated for late May 2020. Concrete walls will be poured later this month.
Staff members of the city and the construction manager hold bimonthly meetings to monitor the project status.
Two large ponds are planned on the site. The city bought the property at a reduced price of $500,000 three years ago after sinkholes were found.
Charles Perry Partners, of Gainesville, was hired last fall as construction manager at risk. The company supervises the hiring of subcontractors and guarantees a maximum cost.
An inexpensive aluminum building was first proposed, but the project cost grew after a brick facade, community room with a moveable wall, a sally port for prisoner transfer and a tower near the entrance were added.
The building will be the first permanent home for the department since the Huey Street station was severely damaged by an electrical fire last October. Since then, officers have operated out of a temporary trailer parked on the old station site as well as substations in Brownwood and on Jackson Street.
When the old station is restored, it likely will be used for records storage. That building, originally constructed as a bomb shelter in the 1960s, had mold and asbestos issues in recent years.