The City and Regina Police Service (RPS) today announced that the former Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC) bus depot and head office will be home to a new downtown headquarters complex, pending Council approval November 27, 2017.
“A new police headquarters is the City’s number one facility priority and this was an unexpected opportunity that we could not pass up,” said Mayor Michael Fougere. “By utilizing this new building and the existing headquarters, we can provide RPS with a completely refurbished home for a significantly lower cost than to build a new headquarters.”
The City’s offer to purchase the STC building, along with two neighbouring parking lots, was approved by the Saskatchewan Government at a cost of $16.25 million. It’s expected a further $21 million will be needed to repurpose the former STC building along with facility improvements to the existing RPS headquarters.
For Police Chief Evan Bray, the new headquarters will provide Regina Police with a functional and well-designed facility that will allow for the effective delivery of services to the community and accommodates growth for the next 25 years.
“Our goal would be to begin moving personnel and using the space in 2019,” the Chief said at the announcement outside current police headquarters. “The size, condition and location of the STC facility provides a unique opportunity to create a campus or compound that allows RPS to maintain a centralized location and satisfy our long-term facility needs.”
Originally built in 1977, Regina’s police headquarters is now home to 575 employees, both sworn officers and civilian personnel. Changes in policing methods over the past four decades, along with technology, exhibit holding and case management, has resulted in significant overcrowding that has meant some employees and business units were moved to other facilities around the City.
The approximately $37 million required to purchase the STC building, two parking lots, and enhancements to the current headquarters, is about one-third the estimated $140 million cost to construct a new police headquarters.
In addition to the STC bus depot and head office at 1734 Osler Street, the City’s successful bid includes parking lots at 1644 Osler Street (across Saskatchewan Drive) and 1773 and 1775 Broad Street, on the same block as the STC building.
The City’s Administration will bring forward a recommendation to City Council for purchase approval at its public meeting on November 27 that contemplates using a combination of reserves as the funding source for the purchase and associated renovations.