Willow Park’s Assistant City Manager of Planning and Development Bernie Parker presented an update on the new public safety building, saying the projected completion is July.
“We started with rain days, but were able to make up those days and stay on course,” Parker said. “The new public safety building will be approximately 15,000 square feet and is designed to replace the existing public safety facility. The project will consist of police and fire department administration areas; two drive-through apparatus bays; fire station support functions, which include sleeping rooms, a kitchen and a day room; and police station functions, which include full locker room and secure evidence storage.”
The project began in April 2017 with construction starting in August 2018.
“You should see some additional progress by the end of this week and you’ll see this becoming more of a building,” Parker said. “I’m excited about it. I know there was a lot of work done back in August and I can’t say enough about the two chiefs that have been supporting us through this process.”
Parker said construction is within the 11 to 12 months they had to complete the project.
“I like that I always see workers on the scene and they’re actually working,” Place 2 Council Member Amy Fennell said.
WP Fire Chief Mike LeNoir said it’s exciting to see how the project is coming together.
“The building looks amazing. The weather has not been the greatest, but Hason Construction has managed well. Once the concrete was poured and cured, the vertical construction really started to take shape and gave a better outline of the building,” LeNoir said. “The new public safety building is most definitely something to be proud of as well as grateful for. The citizens of Willow Park have taken great care of us with voting to have the new building. It allows for safer housing for the firefighters during their tour and have provided much needed space and opportunity for growth.”
WP Police Chief Carrie West said the department could not be happier about the facility.
“We are watching the new facility come to fruition and we could not be happier,” West said. “Our current facility is many years past its life cycle and was not a purpose built facility. Our new building will better suit the needs of our agency. We are looking forward to having a more professional facility for the men and women of the WPPD and for the community we serve.”
The public safety building is right next to the existing on off Stagecoach Trail and was made possible after voters approved a $4.6 million bond proposal in May 2016.
Before construction started, the land where the new public safety building is located was Cross Timbers Park and City Manager Bryan Grimes said they are still moving forward with the city’s master park plan.
“There will be a survey going into the water bills in February, it will be a master park plan survey, and then we are going to have that up on SurveyMonkey for about one month,” Grimes said.
About $35,000 was approved by the WP city council for the park plan in June 2018.
In a previous interview with the Democrat, Grimes said the plan will allow the city to apply for a grant from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, which offers a Local Park Grant Program that assists in development and provides 50 percent matching grants to eligible applicants.