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The citizens of Homestead and Homestead’s Police Officers came together Wednesday, October 7th to celebrate an historic moment, as the City broke ground for the first new police station ever built for its officers. Spirits were high as Homestead’s Mayor and Council and Police spoke about Homestead’s bright future.
“I’ve been here for over 30 years and seen Homestead grow and change so much,” said Homestead Police Chief Al Rolle. “Nothing compares to the outpouring of support we’ve seen to keep our officers safe. It’s times like this that make me so grateful to serve Homestead’s residents.”
Earlier this year, the Department relocated from a dangerous and outdated building located in Downtown to a Temporary Police Station at the Homestead Sports Complex. The old police station presented several issues such as radon and mold contamination, outdated facilities, and other safety concerns. In fact, radon levels inside the old police station are five times higher than they should be and radon is the leading cause of lung cancer amongst non-smokers.
The vast majority of Homestead voters, 74%, voted in favor of keeping our officers safe in a May 2014 Bond referendum that funded the new facilities. This is the first time the Homestead Police Department will be based in a newly constructed building since Homestead was incorporated in 1913.
The new facility will be a 55,000 square, three-story police headquarters with a one story ancillary building and on-site parking. The station was designed by Rodriguez & Quiroga Architects Chartered and the project contractor is Munilla Construction Management. Attendees at the event included Mayor and City Council members, City Manager George Gretsas, Homestead Police Chief Al Rolle, Homestead Police Department Officers, City of Homestead staff, County Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, and other dignitaries.
The new Police Station is part of an overall effort to bring new life to Downtown Homestead with a series of civic and community ventures. These include the new City Hall, which is near completion, the reopening the Seminole Theatre as a cultural arts center and the expansion of Losner Park as a civic plaza for community events.