MELBOURNE, Fla. — The voters have spoken in Brevard County, and now a new state-of-the-art Melbourne Police station is on its way.
- Melbourne Police to get new station
- Referendum passed with 55 percent of vote
- New building should open in early 2021
- ELECTION RESULTS: National, state, local races, plus all ballot issues
The referendum on the November ballot passed with 55 percent of the vote on Election Day.
The new $35 million, 72,000-square-foot police department will be rated for a Category 5 hurricane.
There will be more space, privacy for citizens to report crimes, and room for investigators, plus examining and storing evidence.
Officials have said the need was there due to the large growth in the area, and the current building's wear and tear.
It's the first step toward consolidating the department under one roof, instead of spending millions to repair a 34-year-old facility with lots of issues.
Officers and staff consistently deal with tight quarters, leaky ceilings, and even mold.
Since it was built, the population has nearly doubled to more than 80,000 residents, and the police staff has more than doubled in size to 260.
"We certainly know that there's an investment that the community has made in the police department," Chief David Gillespie tells Spectrum News. "We want to make sure they are proud of that investment, and we want to give back to the community."
Local homeowners will pay an extra $2.50 per month, per $50,000 in property value.
The new location is at the intersection of Airport and NASA Boulevards, about two miles away.
Design on the new building should be done by next year, with its opening in early 2021.