June 17, 2013 - 3:05 PM
Designs for the new Kelowna RCMP building will cost the city $200,000 and that's before they start digging.
City councillors approved today a design budget for the new detachment to be relocated to the north end of downtown Kelowna on Clement Avenue between St. Paul Street and Richter Street. The building is expected to be three to four stories in height, with surface parking. It will provide police servicing for the entire community and consolidate a number of operations around the city.
Building according to the province's RCMP standards comes at a steep price. The last estimated cost for the project was $45 million and the City will have to loan the money over a ten-year period. The building is expected to complete in 2017.
Councillor Andre Blanleil expressed concern over the cost, suggesting Kelowna look to other RCMP building projects recently completed in the province to see how they have balanced the costs.
“Obviously this is going to be a very expensive building...I've seen some of the bills when these buildings come in and it's staggering.”
City Manager Ron Mattiussi says just like hospitals the RCMP building will have to meet federal regulations and safety standards.
“At the end of the day a police building is still a police building.”
Planners have already been consulting with the RCMP locally and provincially.
“We've been in touch with Surrey,” Mattiussi says, adding, “we're making sure we'll be coming back to council at various points...probably more frequently than we would do for our own building.”
The design budget will be spent on specialized consultants as well as a design contract awarded to the most competitive bidder. The goal is to develop a concept design, site plan, cost estimate and an appropriate project budget.
So far there are no solid plans for the future use of the existing RCMP detachment site.
Parks and building manager Terry Barton says the building itself is in bad shape.
“We don't feel we can retrofit it,” he says. But some of the land will be saved for the continuation of the art walk and for the future expansion of the Community Theatre.
To contact the reporter for this story, email Julie Whittet at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (250)718-0428.
Edited 6:00 p.m. June 17, 2013
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