Community Gets First Look at New Smithville Police Department Building

October 18, 2021
By: Dwayne Page

A good crowd turned out Sunday afternoon to take a tour of the new Smithville Police Department building during an open house hosted by city leaders and police officers.

The 12,000 square foot facility (including sally port) will officially open for business within the next couple of weeks after the arrival of new furnishings and some other finishing touches.

Mayor Josh Miller said this new police department has been needed for a long time and is something of which the city can be proud.

“I see the need because the town is growing so much. A lot of people have moved in and I think the town will continue to grow. This building will serve its purpose and meet the needs of the community for many years,” he said.

Smithville Alderman and Police Commissioner Shawn Jacobs said the new police headquarters will give the officers much more room in which to work.

“If you have seen the quarters where our police officers are in right now you know they operate within tiny spaces and are spread out all over city hall. This will give them a building of their own where they can communicate with each other better and its also much safer for the community,” added Alderman Jacobs.

Police Chief Mark Collins said he and his fellow officers could not be more happy with what the city has done for them and the community in building this new facility

“I want to thank the Mayor and Aldermen and former aldermen who approved this project along with the people who built it and everybody involved. For us this facility will be a new world. We will now have plenty of room, better security, and state of the art modern conveniences. We are extremely proud of it and it is something the citizens of Smithville can take pride in. It’s a reflection of what the city thinks of us and the job we’re doing,” said Chief Collins.

The facility has a total roofed area of 12,800 square feet which includes a 1,400 square foot drive through sally port for bringing in prisoners securely. It encompasses a front lobby with bullet proof glass and wall panels, records clerk office, hallways, closet space, four holding cells, armory, conference and training rooms, offices for the chief, captain, detectives, and other officers, rooms for records, investigations, filing reports, conducting interviews, locker room, electrical room, and evidence vaults, restrooms, and break room.

Chief Collins explains how the public may do business with the police department once it opens.

“During normal business hours from 8-5, if you want a report or anything from the police department you will come to the front lobby and see Administrative Assistant Beth Adcock. Nobody will be allowed to roam freely throughout the building. She (Adcock) will then contact an officer who will come up front and go into the report room with you to file a report. After hours, if you need us you may call 615- 215-3000 and central dispatch will have an officer meet you here at the police department to address your needs at that time,” said Chief Collins.

Wayne Oakley of Studio Oakley Architects, LLC of Lebanon who designed the building, prepared construction documents, and assisted the city in putting the project out for bids, said he is proud to have been part of this project.

“It turned out absolutely beautiful and it fits in well with the public square. Its something the city can be proud of and we are proud to have been part of the project. We put a lot into the technology of the building especially for security aspects including cameras, bullet proof glazing, and wall paneling as well as technology to control the opening and closing of gates and doors. Overall it really turned out well,” said Oakley.

The contractor, Boyce Ballard Construction of Murfreesboro, got the bid for construction of the police department building at $2,395,000 but the city issued up to $2.5 million in bonds for the project. Following a ground breaking ceremony on September 4, 2020, construction began on the building but weeks later the work ground to a halt after Boyce Ballard Construction encountered unsuitable soils on the site. The city and contractor eventually agreed to split the cost to remedy the problem and construction resumed. The city’s portion was up to $50,000. Since then the city has had a few other add-ons.

“There is a lot of people to thank for this building including the city council for seeing the need of getting our officers into a new facility. I want to thank Wayne Oakley along with Mike Boyce and Ron Duggin of Boyce Ballard Construction for all their help and everybody who has put in so much time in making this happen,” added Mayor Miller.