New public safety complex progress continues
by Celia Shortt
The new city public safety complex project in Newnan is still humming along despite the recent winter weather that hit Coweta County.
“There were a lot of challenges, but we got through it,” said Project Manager Eric Johnson. “It is to the point where the public safety complex [site] is on grade, and we can proceed with that.”
Johnson works with Potts Construction, the company building the facility for the city.
Newnan City Manager Cleatus Phillips also said the project is progressing despite the recent weather.
“We are starting to pour concrete today (Friday),” he said. “We expect the slab to be finished by the end of this month.”
“We have lost about 40 days due to the weather,” he added. “However, I have instructed the team that the weather is out of our control and not to rush to get those days back. We have no hard deadline to vacate our current facility, so that is a luxury.”
The Newnan Police Department and the Municipal Court are currently housed in the former Newnan Municipal Building at 25 Jefferson Street, the complex that also includes Wadsworth Auditorium and the city’s fire department headquarters.
Johnson said crews are also working to get utilities to the site, pouring footings, and putting in stormwater and sanitary sewer piping. The steel and rebar for the complex are being delivered and stored on site.
Work is also proceeding on a connector road, linking Jefferson Street to Augusta Drive and going through the middle of the 10 acres of land. The site is located next to the old section of Oak Hill Cemetery and across from the former Newnan Cotton Mill property.
In October, the city broke ground on the almost $9 million facility.
“This is a great day for Newnan and obviously a great day for our public safety departments,” said Newnan Mayor Keith Brady at the groundbreaking ceremony.
“This new complex is much needed and well-deserved.” “Forty years ago I would have never thought we would be here because 40 years ago we had just moved into our new building downtown, and it was state of the art then,” added Newnan Police Chief Douglas “Buster” Meadows at the ceremony.
Plans for the new public safety facility include space to expand as needed. It will house the entire Newnan Police Department. The facility will also house a 150-seat municipal courtroom and will have entrances on Jefferson Street and Augusta Drive.
The budget for the public safety complex is just under $9 million, including the cost of the land. The site is the former location of the Hannah Homes public housing project. The old housing complex was razed some years ago.