By Kevin M. Smith

Killeen Daily Herald

The new Killeen police headquarters is expected to cost nearly $4.5 million less than anticipated and to be completed by summer 2009. It also will be environmentally friendly, the building's architect said.

The Public Safety Capital Improvement Program Committee sent a recommendation Tuesday to the Killeen City Council for the new police station on Featherline Road to cost not more than $22.75 million. The city was anticipating spending about $27.16 million.

"That looks like someone saved $5 million, $6 million from what we were going to pay," said committee member and Councilman Larry Cole.

Initially, some committee members worried about the consequences of cutting costs.

"Chief, what are we missing?" committee member and Councilman Juan Rivera asked Killeen Police Chief Dennis Baldwin.

"Nothing," Baldwin replied. "The department is pleased with the functionality; we didn't lose anything ... every time we looked at it, it got better."

Baldwin said the proposed facility would meet the department's long-term needs.

City Manager Connie Green said several members of the police department and city staff worked with PSA Dewberry, an architect and engineering firm, and Lee Lewis Construction to get the price down.

"There have been no compromises or sacrifices made that would impair that facility," Green said.

The three-story, 80,000-square-foot building also includes provisions to expand in 20 to 30 years, said Don Wertzberger of PSA Dewberry.

Wertzberger said if the Killeen City Council approves the price at the Jan. 22 meeting, Lee Lewis Construction can break ground next month and have the building done by summer 2009.


The committee also recommended to the council $372,000 in additional services by PSA Dewberry. That price includes $112,000 for furniture, fixtures and equipment design; $75,000 for LEED Silver Certification design and engineering; $125,000 for building commission; $50,000 for specialty consultation on geothermal design and inspection; and $10,000 for an outdoor running track.

Wertzberger said the furniture and equipment are more than just chairs and desks. They include evidence lockers, dispatch consoles, fitness room equipment, training room equipment and chairs that are durable and work with police officers with guns holstered.

The $112,000 also covers the cost of ensuring the floor box with electrical and ethernet outlets are in the correct place in each room for the furniture. The price will also take care of the delivery of furniture.

City staff agreed that was more than it could take on.

"There is a lot of stuff we're not knowledgeable of ... I don't think we have the staffing to oversee ordering," said Brenda Essenburg, director of general services in the finance department.

The $75,000 for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Silver Certification and $125,000 for building commission are steps to make the building environmentally friendly in hopes of recouping those costs in energy savings.

The LEED Green Building Rating System is the nationally-accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings, according to the U.S. Green Building Council's Web site. Wertzberger said there is a lot of paperwork involved in the certification.

The geothermal feature will help save energy costs, Wertzberger said. Geothermal energy is heat from the Earth. According to, geothermal energy is the thermal energy contained in the rock and fluid in the Earth's crust.

The outdoor running track will be about a half-mile and have work stations. Baldwin said it will help officers meet the physical fitness test requirements that will be mandated in 2009.

Fire Station No. 8

In other business, the committee sent its recommendation to the council to approve the low bid of $3.95 million from Aycock Construction, of Harker Heights, to build Fire Station No. 8. The new fire station will be located near the intersection of Stagecoach and Trimmier roads. The bid was $3.86 million.

Green suggested approving Aycock's alternate bid for the addition of a muffler and sound buffer. The committee agreed, and that pushed the cost up to $3.95 million.

Green said the city has allocated $7 million to build Fire Station No. 8 and to rebuild Fire Station No. 1. Green said the 14,000-square-foot Fire Station No. 8 will be larger than Fire Station No. 1.

"There is not need for us to make cuts," Green said. "The remaining $3 million will be sufficient for Fire Station No. 1.

The bid states construction will be completed within 270 days.

Contact Kevin M. Smith at or call (254) 501-7550

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