KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – Police and fire fighting personnel will soon move into a new police station at Georgetown, which Prime Minister and Minister of National security Dr. Ralph Gonsalves has dubbed “Hotel Georgetown”.
Gonsalves said that the EC$3.7 million, three-story facility is “the mother of all police stations”.
Furniture for the facility is expected to arrive from Indonesia on Sunday, the shipment having been delayed by recent storms.
The station is designed to house 54 cops — 34 males and 20 females — and will serve as the headquarters of the eastern division of the Police Force.
The building includes a magistrate court and a fire department – including a fire tender, along with facilities for detectives, traffic cops, and community-relations personnel.
It has private quarters for three non-commissioned officers, holding cells, interview rooms, a gym, a radio communications room, and an armoury.
“The constituency of the ‘Comrade’ deserves the best,” Gonsalves said at the opening ceremony Tuesday as he noted that the police station cost twice as much as those his government built in Questelles and Canouan.
“I am determined that the police men and women who go out there, who are the first line of defence, must have excellent accommodation and have very good working conditions,” Gonsalves said.
“The days of the police men and women having facilities, which only the most rugged Boy Scout will tolerate for a day [are over],” he added.
Gonsalves also listed police stations his government has constructed or refurbished, noting that the New Democratic Party did not build any police stations during its 17 years in office.
He further spoke of the initiatives that his government’s to attract trained professionals to the Force and to retain existing members.
The police station was constructed by Sea Operations Ltd. at a cost of EC$3,658,312 with a further EC$101,376 spent on furniture.
The building stands on 14,600 square feet of land and two additional parcels of land were acquired to enhance the surrounding.
The Ministry of Transport and Works designed and supervised the project.