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Prineville Police Department has settled into new facility, providing better space for police officers and dispatch center

JASON CHANEY - Local 911 dispatchers have much more room in the new Prineville Police Department facility.

The City of Prineville Police Department has officially moved into their new space on 1251 Northeast Elm Street.

The Police Department began moving into their new building in late April and early May of 2021. The move included their entire staff, as well as the 9-1-1 dispatch center.

"We started moving in phases into the new building, and the dispatch center came in first, as we wanted to make sure it was up and operational before we moved anything else," explained Prineville Police department Police Chief, Dale Cummins. "Then we moved patrol in and our detectives, and last, we moved our evidence room into the building. It was about a two-to-three-week process."

Cummins indicated that the old building on Third Street was originally built to be a city hall. It was not set up to function as a police department, and the old structure had a courtyard in the center of the building, limiting space and configuration in the layout of the building space. He emphasized that it was a priority to ensure that the 9-1-1 dispatch center had a space of their own in the new building.

"In the old building, literally for an officer to walk from the report writing room to where they would put evidence away, they had walk through the dispatch center," Cummins explained of the need for 9-1-1 dispatch to have their own space.

He added that they were able to design the new building to fit the police department's unique needs. The old building only had approximately 6,000 square feet of usable space. The new space has a total of 18,000 square feet, which consists of 6,000 on each floor. There are two levels and a full basement, with the dispatch center now contained in its own space. There are four, full-time dispatch consoles in the new room, with room to grow in the future. They also have their own kitchen and restrooms.

"It's basically kind of self-contained, and you can go to the dispatch and spend most of the day there without having to wander through the building," Cummins pointed out of the dispatch center.

Cummins also stated that the dispatch center always needs a tower, and once they purchased the property, they were able to build the framework for the new system they are developing. The elevation of the location provides a good venue for their radio and communication needs, including the 9-1-1 dispatch.

The PPD's information technology department, previously housed at the Prineville City Hall, has now joined their building to maintain their communication systems. The design of the building was taken into consideration to allow for flow and efficiency for both the dispatch center and the police officers. The building also included necessary engineering and technology upgrades to ensure that the building met earthquake resistance standards. They are also now out of the floodplain.

He said the report writing room now has four report writing stations, which allows the officer to have everything they need at their fingertips. The venue for writing reports is an important space for police officers, and the old building was not conducive to this important task that officers do daily.

"The important part was, it was a piece of property that we were able to find that allowed us to do the expansion that was necessary," elaborated Cummins.

He said that it will serve the City's needs for the next 25 years, even as the population grows.

"We are set for a long period of time, and not having to worry the taxpayers about trying to get another building or trying to expand at all, because we have everything we need."

He added that secondly, the move made it more efficient for his staff. They were able to design it specifically as a police department.

"As simple as the flow of what an officer does from the minute they get in their car, to their report writing, impounding evidence, and interviewing people — the flow now makes them more efficient at what they do, which helps everyone," he concluded.

The city is looking at options for the old building on Third Street.

"The City will be working with the County and other agencies on what near term needs the community has," stated City of Prineville Manager, Steve Forrester.  "For example, would the county need some short term space for people (offices) or storage when the commence the build out of the new Justice center. The City will be evaluating the potential to repurpose the building for the benefit of the community.  Worst case would be the city removes the building and expands parking and park space for the city park facility."


Prineville Police Department

1251 NE Elm St.

Phone: 541-447-4168

Fax: 541-447-8619

Emergencies: Dial 9-1-1

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