Police audit results, security upgrades needed

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COLUMBIA - Columbia Police Department staff will be at Monday's city council meeting to discuss security upgrades at the CPD headquarters building. The CPD Assistant Police Chiefs conducted a security audit at the CPD headquarters building and determined several deficiencies in security which need to be addressed. 

Michael Trapp, Second Ward representative for the City of Columbia, said for those who have never visited the downtown police station, it is an older building in need of updates. He said there are already funds in the police building maintenance funds, so there won't be any new additional funds required. 

The project is expected to cost $175,000.

"In order to spend a lot of money, it's required to have a public hearing, to give the public a chance to weigh in on the necessity of the improvements and the approach that we'll take," Trapp said. 

CPD is asking the council to set a public hearing about security upgrades to its headquarters building for Nov. 16. 

Trapp said the upgrades are not going to involve changing zoning or anything that would impact the comprehensive plan, but it's hard to speculate exactly what the upgrades may be. 

He said when we was given a tour of the headquarters building he was surprised by the outdated nature, but renovating the existing building is only one part of the strategy.

Trapp said the station is also too small and it's inadequate for the police force that Columbia has. He said one of the things they want to do to improve facilities is to build a new, up-to-date police station on the north side of town. 

"There's a lot of issues with the police station, in addition to it just being old and out of date, and obviously having some safety issues that need to be addressed," Trapp said.  

A two-story CPD headquarters building was constructed in 1933 and a third floor was added in 1978, according to the Columbia Police Department history page on gocolumbiamo.org.

CPD declined to give any specifics as to what security upgrades are needed.