Police and Crime Commissioner Michael Lane, alongside the Chief Constable of Hampshire Constabulary, and contractor MACE director Terry Spraggett today broke the ground where Portsmouth’s multi-million pound policing centre will be built.
Located on the Merlin Park Development off Airport Service Road in Copnor, the site is anticipated to open in late spring 2019. The Police Investigation Centre (PIC) will keep policing within the boundaries of Portsmouth. Along with the retention of the Neighbourhood and Response & Patrol teams on Portsea Island, this keeps policing in the heart of the city.
Michael Lane said: “Professional engagement of a range of partners has led to the delivery of something that is the hallmark of what we need to do. This really matters, the new Eastern PIC will work for the community, it will work professionally and it will work operationally for policing. The new centre will bring together best practice building techniques and build on the achievement of our centres in Basingstoke and Southampton.
“Once operational the Eastern PIC will bring Constabulary colleagues together to be more effective and efficient, and will enable policing to be better delivered and help to keep our communities SAFER.”
Supt. Jason Kenny, District Commander of Portsmouth, said: “The new Police Investigation Centre will be a welcome addition to how we police Portsmouth and the surrounding districts.
The District Commander continued: “Integrating investigations and a custody in a purpose-built facility will allow us to work more effectively together across the police commands. This modern facility will certainly support modern policing and enable arresting officers to move more quickly through the custody process so that they can return to patrolling the communities we serve.”
Councillor Donna Jones, Leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: “I am delighted work has started on the new investigation centre that will provide an important base for the police in Portsmouth. The council and police work closely together on various issues across the city and improving their facilities can only be a good thing for residents and businesses.”
The project for the Eastern Police Investigation Centre includes design and new build of a 36 cell custodial facility together with police accommodation incorporating Home Office design guides and standards.
The multi-million pound investigation centre, which will cover Portsmouth, Fareham, Gosport, Havant, East Hampshire, and support the Isle of Wight, will include 36 custody cells and a public facing evidence management desk.
The new base was chosen to be built on the island of Portsmouth so that policing can be kept in the heart of the city. The site is on the Merlin Park Development off Airport Service Road in Copnor. It will allow frontline police officers to resume and patrol their local communities quicker after taking people to be kept in custody to the centre.
The centre will accommodate 430 members of staff on a shift basis