West Liberty Council authorizes police to proceed with Phase I
ABOVE: West Liberty Village Council has received two professional opinions advising the current West Liberty Police Department is in disrepair and no longer fit for use. HOME PAGE SLIDE SHOW PHOTO: Police Chief Shane Oelker types notes Monday from his office, a former bedroom at the West Liberty Police Department. The police station — a converted residential home — could be torn down as early as May if council follows through on plans to build a new department. (EXAMINER PHOTO | NATE SMITH)
The village of West Liberty appears poised to tear down the converted residential home that currently passes for a police department, and build anew on or near the same downtown location.
A resolution was passed at the Monday council meeting authorizing Police Chief Shane Oelker to spend $5,000 to have plans drawn up for a new building, and to make arrangements to raze the existing the structure at 112 E. Columbus St.
The village will work with engineer Mike Bow and the Dublin-based M&K Engineering Co. to organize and plan construction of a new police department. Total engineering costs for the project will be about $30,000.
According to information the police chief shared with council in October after he initially received that engineering proposal, about $350,000 would build and furnish a new headquarters.
Chief Oelker had identified village-owned property on the west end of town at Bradley and Sidney streets near the bike path parking lot as a potential location for a new building. Council determined Monday, however, the police department is better suited downtown so as to be more accessible to residents.
“One thing that’s stuck out to me that you’ve said before is that residents are able to walk to the police department if they need assistance,” councilwoman Brenda Coy said. “I think the police department should be kept downtown.”
Current zoning laws make it difficult to build a new structure at the existing location.
“A permit to build there has already been denied,” Chief Oelker told council Monday. “We would need a variance.”
Read complete story in Tuesday’s Examiner.
CLICK HERE to subscribe today!
WEB EDITION STARTING AT $9.50 FOR 5 WEEKS!
Also in Tuesday’s Examiner:
Water/sewer, trash collection rates on the rise in West Liberty
RUSHSYLVANIA VILLAGE COUNCIL
Returning mayor gets up to speed