WATERVILLE — The latest estimates for a new police station increases costs above the $2.5 million approved by the City Council to between $3 million and $3.4 million.

City Manager Michael Roy, who released the figures Friday, said the initial estimates overlooked some related expenses for the new station.

The newest numbers estimate building a one-story police station at Head of Falls at $3.2 million; a two-story station there, $3.4 million; a police station in the Morning Sentinel building at 31 Front St. with an exterior sally port, $3.3 million; and the Sentinel building with an interior sally port, $3 million.

The estimates were calculated by Port City Architecture and Wright-Ryan Construction Inc., the Portland firms hired by the city for the project.

The city will host a meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the council chambers for the public to ask questions about and comment on the project.

Meanwhile, Roy on Friday detailed the expenses missed during initial estimates made more than an a year ago.

“We just looked at a per-square-foot cost times the number of square feet,” he said. “We forgot to include engineering and architectural fees, we forgot to include the cost of a new dispatch center construction and we forgot to include lockers and other furnishings.”

Roy said councilors would have to take another vote to increase funding for a police station, in light of the new, higher estimates.

The council on June 5 is scheduled to review the estimated costs for building new versus buying and retrofitting the Morning Sentinel building, which is being offered to the city for $550,000. Councilors that night also are scheduled to vote on whether to buy the Sentinel building, which is across Front Street from the current police station in the basement of City Hall.

Meanwhile, Roy said the decision about where the police station goes should be based on a number of factors, including cost, with cost being critically important.

He said other considerations are location, size of the site, amenities or lack of amenities of the site, the interior space and how well it works.

“An important variable is future expansion,” he said. “That should not be forgotten. Now what we need to do is compare sites, compare one site versus the other, parking, in and out access, egress.”

He said the cost comparison issued Friday is just one component of the analysis.

“The contractor and architect will be prepared to speak about some other factors (at Tuesday’s meeting),” Roy said.

He noted that the cost comparisons do not reflect the loss of $33,000 in annual property taxes the city would lose if it buys the Sentinel building.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.