The Waxahachie City Council unanimously approved a contract with Brinkley Sargent Wiginton Architects for the design of a new police station.

The contract, approved at Monday night’s regular city council meeting, for architectural and engineering services is $999,360.

“We are really excited to be able to move forward on this project and start the design process of the new police station. It is a great step forward,” Waxahachie Police Chief Wade Goolsby said. “The design process takes several months. The construction process will take several months. It will be a while before we are actually moving in.”

The next step in the process is to finalize the purchase of property for the new station and several sites have been looked at by city officials already, Goolsby said.

City Manager Paul Stevens said bonds totaling about $500,000 for the purchase of property and other related items for the new police station were issued by the city two years ago.

According to architect company website, the business has built several law enforcement facilities. These facilities include the Mesquite Police Facility, the Grand Prairie Public Safety Facility, the city of San Antonio Public Safety Headquarters, the University of Oklahoma Police Department building and the Fort Collins Police Services Building.

In 2014, the city selected what was formely Brinkley Sargent Architecture to complete a needs assessment for a new police station. The needs assessment was completed for station in May 2014. The projected construction costs for the station is estimated at $12.49 million This cost has been adjusted because of construction cost increases during the past year.

Hal Sargent, president of Brinkley Sargent Wiginton Architects, told the council construction on the project could start around November 2016 and would take 14 months to complete.

City officials have considered a new police station for the past several years. The current station is located at 216 N. College St. in downtown. The main problem the police department is facing is space, both for officers to work and storage space.

In a previous article, former Waxahachie Police Chief Chuck Edge said currently two detectives share one office, which makes it difficult for them to conduct interviews with witnesses or victims. The limited space of the building also makes it difficult to keep both suspects and families apart from each other.

By approving the contract with Brinkley Sargent Wiginton Architects, this is the first step to get the project under way, Stevens said.

“We are really excited that we are finally able to get that going. When chief Goolsby came on, that is one of the first main charges that he had was to start working with the architect, so we can get moving on the police building,” Stevens said. “They (Brinkley Sargent Wiginton Architects) are one of the foremost designers of police buildings, not in just Texas, but in the United States.”