Picture courtesy of GPD
Interior work began last week on Gardner’s new justice center. Despite seasonal rains and some snow, construction has not slowed.
Sgt. Steve Benz, Gardner police department, said work was still on track for the facility to open this summer, probably July or August. Walls are being erected, electrical wiring is being done and sheet rocking is set to begin.
In August, 2017, Gardner voters approved a new justice center by about 71 percent and issued 13.75 million in bonds to construct the facility near 167th and Moonlight.
It will house both the police department and municipal court.
Originally scheduled to open in August 2019, it may squeak forward to open in July, according Benz.
“I recall originally hearing of an August, 2019 opening, but I am now told July of 2019 is probably more accurate,” Benz has said previously. The current police facility is aged and deteriorating, and with Gardner’s population growth, space is no longer adequate. The municipal court has never had a dedicated space and has always been conducted in city council chambers. On any given court date, there may be up to 300 people on the docket.
According to the Notice of Bond Election on the city website, the city will make projected payments of $950,000 annually for 20 years. The estimated average interest rate is 3.40 percent