Go-ahead given for police building programme

PUBLISHED: 12:00 31 January 2012

Archant

THE consortium tasked with building a host of new police buildings across the Avon and Somerset force area has been unveiled.

Avon and Somerset Constabulary has been given permission to appoint Blue Light Partnership as the force’s associate in its Building for the Future project.

This will see the creation of a new operational base in Bridgwater, two custody and crime investigation centres in Patchway and Keynsham, a tri-force firearms training facility in Portishead and two new police stations.

The firearms centre will be used by officers from the Avon and Somerset, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire constabularies.

With two enclosed indoor firing ranges and a means-of-entry tactics house, it will be used to train officers to the same standard and promote greater coordination across the forces.

It is hoped the new operation and custody centres will enable better detection of crime through improved processes and services.

The Blue Light Partnership is made up of Bilfinger Berger Project Investments, Miller Construction, facilities manager Cofely, and designers Haverstock Associates, Ryder Architecture and Scott Wilson.

The project, the funding for which has come from private finance initiatives, will see £71.2million spent on the buildings’ construction, furniture and fittings and the first fit of IT.

The scheme will create 33 apprenticeship opportunities as well as the chance for 16 offenders to be involved in the construction process. Schools and colleges will also have the chance to link up with the programme.

Planning applications will soon be submitted with the aim of beginning construction in September and completing the buildings between January and March of 2014.

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