BEAVERTON, Ore. (KOIN) — A plan to upgrade the building where police and other emergency services are housed in Beaverton was rejected in 2014, but voters may soon get another chance to weigh in on the issue.
It would cost $35 million to retrofit the building, which city leaders say needs major seismic upgrades in order to withstand a potentially devastating earthquake.
“Our police desperately need a new building,” councilmember Lacey Beaty said.
A committee in favor of the plan made its pitch to the city council Tuesday night saying, despite the 2014 vote, locals now want a facility that will stay standing.
“People are more aware of the vulnerabilities,” Capt. Jim Monger with Beaverton PD said. “Right now, [at] our current police facility, if we were to have this type of earthquake we wouldn’t be able to respond. We’d be buried under the rubble.”
Capt. Monger and others say it’s time for a new building.
But where would it go?
The current plan would involve tearing down the Beaverton Activities Center at the intersection of SW Hall and Allen, and constructing a 90,000 sq-ft facility in its place.
The city says it would come up with $35 million to construct the building from a previously-passed bond measure and a start-up chunk from the general fund.
“It’s going to provide the facilities that our police have desperately needed for years,” Beaverton Mayor Denny Doyle said. “It’ll be nice knowing that when you call 911 someone has a real prayer of picking up and coming to help us.”
But not everyone is in favor of the plan.
“I think that you’re going to have some conflict when people say that building is so bad the police can’t do anything with it,” councilmember Betty Bode said. “They’re moving, but the courts, they can stay.”
The committee will continue ironing out the details next Tuesday when the city council is expected to decide whether or not to send it to the November ballot.