New home coming for New Canaan Police?

NEW CANAAN — Will it be a new headquarters, or renovations to the existing building that the New Canaan Police Department calls home?

That is the first decision facing a building committee appointed Monday by the Board of Selectmen.

“We have studied that for two years,” First Selectman Kevin Moynihan said in propsing the committee, which was unanimously approved.

“I am thrilled that the town is moving the Police Department’s building project forward,” Krolikowski said Tuesday.

“The first task is to determine what we should do,” Moynihan said, adding that the building is “really in need of an upgrade or replacement.”

Still, “They need to take several months to study to see if they can find the right land in town or possibly just build a new building behind the current building,” Moynihan said.

Voting members of the committee are Paul Tully, Bill Walbert, Jim Beall, Michael Chen, Amy Murphy Carroll, Penny Rashin and Police Commission Chairman Paul Foley as regular members. Former Police Commission Chairman and current CERT Director Stuart Sawabini will be an adviser to the committee, Moynihan said, praising his institutional knowledge.

Ex officio members are Chief Leon Krolikowski, Deputy Chief John DiFederico and Captain Andrew Walsh, who may eventually be joined by non-voting representatives of the Department of Public Works, Moynihan said.

While the current headquarters has an historic, some may say stately, look, and is located on South Avenue, a main road into town, parts are crumbling and the former school does not fit the needs of a modern police department, according to Chief Leon Krolikowski and others in the department.

“That building has pluses and minuses,” Moynihan said. “It’s a great location but it’s not idea for police operations.”

“Our building has not been wholly renovated or updated since 1981, and there is a myriad of issues that need resolution,” Krolikowski said

The current building was renovated, transformed from a high school into police headquarters.

“They say you only get two renovations on a building,” Moynihan said. “New you’d get 80 or 100 years.”

Selectman Nick Williams said the current headquarters is dark, cramped and not welcoming.

“Given the sustained, exceptional performance and professionalism of our department’s men and women,” Krolikowski said, “it is comforting to know that they will soon have a modern and more functional space to do the challenging work they do each day.”

Source Article