The City of Gaithersburg now owns the building at 16 S. Summit Ave. that will become the home of the Gaithersburg Police Department (GPD), a community meeting room, and possibly house the Mayor and City Council chambers.
Initially, the city planned to finalize the $5.1 purchase in mid-November 2015 but a tenant needed additional time to relocate from the property, said Dennis Enslinger, deputy city manager. The property was acquired in mid-May. “Now that we have finalized the purchase of the property, we are moving into the RFP (request for proposal) phase for selection of a design team to complete the construction documents and the design for the renovation of the building,” he said.
Before purchasing the property, the city did preliminary floor plans to show possibilities for where the police station and community rooms may be located and to make sure they had enough room.
The building renovation is estimated to cost $8.4 million. “The design phase we are hoping to be completed by (fiscal) 2017 and construction would start in fiscal year 2018 and then occupancy sometime in fiscal 2019,” he said. “It will take us almost about a year to design it. A police station is a fairly complex building so it will take us a little while to make sure that we have all our ‘I’s dotted and ‘t’s crossed with the design, and the construction will start after that point.”
During a mid-October work session, the Mayor and City Council discussed possibly moving the elected group’s chambers to the new space to free up space for staff at City Hall for additional meeting rooms.
Enslinger said no decision has been made yet regarding the potential move and anticipates discussion during the design phase of the project. “We are looking forward to building the new facility and accommodating the police department in a semi-new location,” he said.