Sod turned for US$28M modern 12-storey Brickdam Police Station
More than two years after it was destroyed by a fire, the sod was turned on Monday for the construction of a modern US$28M Brickdam Police Station to be complete in the next 30 months.
The 12-storey concrete, glass and steel building will be constructed on the plot of land which previously housed the century old Brickdam Police Station which was destroyed in a fire on October 2, 2021.
It is the single largest infrastructural project to be undertaken by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
To ensure safety, the building will earthquake resistant, fire safety and prevention mechanisms, CCTV system and a ‘robust’ telephone system. It will house several key departments such as traffic, finance and the impact base.
In delivering the feature address at the sod turning ceremony, President Dr Irfaan Ali said his government has been investing in providing the necessary assets to the joint services, which includes the police force, to boost capacity.
In doing this, President Ali said for the first a marine division is being formed that will be capable of utilising river asset for crime fighting and intelligence. To do this, he said state-of-the-art marine asset is currently being acquired to support the work of the police force.
In addition, President Ali said an air capacity is being built for the police force and it will be integrated with the Guyana Defence Force.
“In the Guyana Police Force, for example we will have an integration between the chopper, the sea craft capacity, the air capability and the land capability. Of course in the land capability we are already investing in bikes, motor vehicles, buses, ATVs. So we are building that capability,” President Ali said.
And another aspect is the force’s human resource capacity. So the plan, President Ali said, is to move most of the services offered at Police Headquarters, Eve Leary to Brickdam.
This move, the President said will pave the way to support the establishment a world-class state-of-the-art Police Academy which will serve the region.
More important though, President Ali said, is the digitisation and automation of the police system.
“We want to remove the human bias in our security architecture. So everything will be done through traceability. The entire system will be on a digital platform that is fully automated where people will be held accountable by a system,” President Ali said.
The Head of State reminded that policing is not only about architecture and crime fighting but also capacity building to develop a country of peace.
The project to construct the 12-storey concrete, glass and steel complex was awarded to R. Bassoo & Sons Construction Company in partnership with Qing Jian Group Company Guyana Incorporated.
In brief remarks, Contractor Roy Basso said he intends to deliver the project before the completion date without compromising quality.
Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police (ag) Clifton Hicken said the project forms part of police force plan to provide improved service and efficiency to members of the public.
“This concedes with the transformation are trying to achieve moving from a Guyana Police Force to a Guyana Police Service. You cannot do this transition without the right infrastructure in place,” Hicken said.
With the tools being provided, Hicken said it is important that the status quo of the police force is maintained so that the expected output can be provided.
“The days of making adhoc decisions is over. Everything is being done now in a structured way and all we have to do after the structure is in place is to administer that.
“Much is given, much is expected,” Hicken said.