City breaks ground for new public safety facility

City breaks ground for new public safety facility

LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- Monday morning, Lawton city leaders held the ground breaking ceremony for the new public safety facility. The Lawton Police Department, City Jail, Central Fire Station, and the Municipal Court will soon be under one roof.

"Everything will be there, where they can all work together because they are our public defenders and public servants for public safety and all," said Fitch.

It will be on Gore Boulevard between Railroad Street and Lawrence Avenue. The facility will cost an estimated $ 33.7 million dollars and that money is coming from the 2015 Sales Tax Extension.The three story complex will cover 112,000 square feet. It will have 350 work stations and the city jail will house over 100 inmates. Police Chief James Smith said it's a project they have been working towards in the last three years. 

"The building that we are in is was built in 1964 and we have out grown its capacity for that but now we are moving forward in tow years hopefully we will move into a facility that is state of the art its going to help us do our job and keep the community safe," said Smith.

The new fire station will have three drive through bays that will be much larger. It will also include additional living space, and training rooms for fire crews.

Fire Chief Dewayne Burk said the facility will improve their response times for home on the east side of Lawton.He is excited about the new facility, but Central fire Station holds a lot of tradition.

"You look forward to the advancements and the technology, but you got the sentimental connection  to the existing facility a lot of guys are going to have a difficult time leaving," said Burk.

The Municipal Court will have a state of the art court room, and the court clerks office will have a much better work flow and space.

"Its going to be a safer building which is probably most important," said Johnson.

Nathan Johnson serves as the Municipal court judge for the city of Lawton and knows how much this facility will mean to him and his staff.

"Justice demands out best efforts the design team and engineers have done a really great job putting a wonderful building that is going to meet our needs well into the future probably more than we can imagine," said Johnson.

The city says construction could start over the next few weeks. City leaders also talked about the time capsule at the ceremony. Items collected from longtime community agencies and organizations will be placed inside, and in 50 years, it will be uncovered.

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