City of Lawrence Officially Opens $12.9M Lawrence Police Department Headquarters
Photographer / Belinda Russell
On December 9, the new headquarters for the Lawrence Police Department (LPD) officially opened. After years of being stationed in the City of Lawrence Government Center, the LPD finally has its own building for all police operations. With a budget of $12.9M, the city was able to build a new 32,000 square foot LPD headquarters in a four and a half-acre lot.
“The construction of this building gives us an identity and a way for us to better serve our citizens,” says David Hofmann, Chief of Police.
Before December, the LPD was stationed in the City of Lawrence Government Center, which was not an adequate office space for police operations. They conducted interrogations in a former closet, they had no training room or fitness center for their police and a list of other inadequacies. Over the last few years, they hired an outside firm to conduct an objective report on whether or not they should fund this project. When the study came back, it was more than necessary.
Hofmann, the mayor’s office, the controller’s office and members of the command staff teamed up to make this plan a reality. They started talking to architects and designers to make a plan, and in July 2018 they broke ground. They made sure the new building would be closer to the residents they protect.
“Finally we have a safe and secure place for those who provide safety and security for residents in Lawrence,” Hofmann says,
After finally moving into the headquarters at the beginning of December, this new space gives the LPD an opportunity for new advancements and new ways to connect to the residents of Lawrence. According to Hofmann, there are a lot of new features to the headquarters including 125 parking spaces, individual offices for detectives and investigators, three criminal rooms wired for AV recording, a 911 center in the basement, specialty storage rooms for evidence and firearms and more.
The LPD will also welcome Lawrence Township Schools, churches, businesses and many other community groups by opening a reception center for people to reserve for their community needs. All who were involved in the project made sure to design the new headquarters so the community can utilize the space as well and feel connected to the LPD.
Even though the project as a whole will be better for all, there were still challenges in the move-in process, according to Hofmann. The first challenge was to relocate the 9-1-1 call center. The second challenge was to safely and securely transfer thousands of pieces of evidence and property from their previous property room to their new property room. Hofmann made sure to involve highly specialized experts to make sure the move would go smoothly.
“I have extreme confidence that the process of moving has been handled with patience and professionalism, which is how we handle all of our business,” Hofmann says.
Hofmann and the Lawrence Police Department are excited to provide the residents of Lawrence with a safe place to come to them with any issue, big or small. For more information about the LPD and what they do for the community, visit cityoflawrence.org/police. You can visit their new headquarters at 5150 N Post Rd.