The plan to remodel the Arroyo Grande Police Station is moving forward with $1.4 million in renovations expected to begin in early 2014 and take eight months.
On Tuesday night, the City Council unanimously approved the temporary relocation of the Police Department to the Woman’s Club & Community Center in late February.
The council also approved temporarily contracting with the Sheriff’s Office to provide dispatch services while the station at North Halcyon Road is remodeled.
Police Chief Steve Annibali said police response times will not be affected.
City leaders plan to seek a permanent contract with the Sheriff’s Office for dispatch; the temporary contract will act as a test for a possible future agreement.
The $1.4 million is being spent to repair and update the aging station after Arroyo Grande voters twice rejected bond measures — one in 2012 for $6.7 million and one in 2010 for $6 million — to pay for building a new facility.
“What we are looking at is probably the best solution to our problem,” Councilman Joe Costello said.
Changes will include expanding evidence storage space, improving locker rooms to meet the needs of female and male employees, and fixing water damage. The Police Department has already done away with holding cells and takes people directly to County Jail, Annibali said.
“Many times, people who have to go to jail may require a number of services such as psychiatric or medical attention that we don’t always have,” Annibali said. “We don’t have the means to provide those services or even feed them.”
The remodel will temporarily displace 22 classes typically held at the Woman’s Club & Community Center.
The city has tentative agreements with St. John’s Lutheran Church, the South County Regional Center and the city of Pismo Beach to temporarily host those activities.
The city will pay $6,000 in additional costs those groups will incur.