((L-R) Redmond Community Service Officer Sara Fenno with a furry friend. Plans are in the works for a new Public Safety Facility in Redmond. Captain Devin Lewis of the Redmond Police Department, far right, with visitors to the police station | Photos courtesy of the Redmond Police Department)
As with any city that is growing, its infrastructure must grow along with it. Services need to expand to keep up with the demands of a budding population.
As part of its “Keeping Your Eye on 2025” goals, Redmond city officials are launching plans for a new Public Safety Facility. “We are looking at building a new facility for Redmond on the north end of town at 2983 NW Canal,” says Captain Devin Lewis of the Redmond Police Department, who will assume the role of Redmond Chief of Police on January 1, 2022, following Chief Dave Tarbet’s retirement. “We just closed on the property, which is about eight acres. It’s super exciting.”
With a target completion date of Spring 2024, Lewis says the project is in the early stages. “The next step will be to try to get a firm to come in and do a needs assessment and a design phase,” he says. “They’ll look at the land and talk to people across the city including stakeholders and within the police department to get ideas. We hope to have this step done by the end of January 2022.” He adds, “We want to be able to show voters what we are looking for with this facility and hope to get it onto the May 2022 ballot.”
Lewis says the goal for the facility is to have a large enough property to be able to expand and grow along with the city. “It’s a big investment, so we don’t want to build something we will outgrow in ten to 20 years. That’s one of our main goals. We are looking at this project in the 40- to 50-year range, with the ability to expand, whether outward or upward.” Inability to expand is one of the issues with the current building, he says. “It’s great, but we are surrounded on all sides, so we can’t expand out, and we can’t expand up due to the building. We are really past-due for new facility.”
At the new Redmond Public Safety Facility, there are a number of features that the police department hopes to implement. “What we are trying to do is really look into improving the level of services we are offering the public,” says Lewis. Those hoped-for services include increased parking for anyone coming to the police department; a much larger and secure lobby; secure rooms where police staff can meet with the public; and a large multipurpose room that would serve as an emergency incident center and where gatherings such as community meetings or trainings, town halls or Citizen Academy meetings could be held. “We have lots of other ideas and want to get input from members of the community.” Other possibilities include a safe parking/meeting area that would be appropriate for child custody drop-offs or where online purchase transactions could take place, and a community park on the property.
At the end of the needs assessment, Lewis says the department hopes to have some good visuals to share with the community, but at this stage, it’s too early for that. “If we can beat our target completion date, that would be outstanding. But these things take time, and this is a big project.” He adds, “We are kind of open to everything right now. That’s one of things that’s so exciting about a project like this: The sky’s the limit.”