South Holland wants bank building converted to police station

2013-09-06T00:00:00Z South Holland wants bank building converted to police stationGregory Tejeda Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
September 06, 2013 12:00 am  • 

SOUTH HOLLAND | Village officials have hired an architectural firm to convert the one-time Motor Bank building into new headquarters for the Police Department.

The Village Board voted 6-0 when they met Tuesday to hire JMA Architects. The total project is estimated to cost the village $3 million. Village Administrator Jason Huisman said the South Holland-based architectural firm’s fee will not exceed 7 percent of that total cost.

The property is at 16340 South Park Ave. It most recently was used by MB Financial as an auxiliary location. The plot of land is 90,000 square feet, and contains a 35,000-square-foot building that will be reconfigured into a police headquarters.

The current Police Department offices are on 162nd Street next to the Village Hall. Officials have said the current facility lacks adequate space for jail cells, administrative offices, storage rooms and a courtroom. Currently, South Holland’s court cases are held one day a month at the police facility in Lansing, 2710 170th St.

South Holland purchased the property in the spring for $312,500 with money police had seized from asset forfeiture cases.

“None of this is taxpayer dollars or any general funds that could have funded other programs,” Huisman said.

Work on reconfiguring the bank building will begin this fall. Huisman said village officials want to have it reopen as a police station in the spring of 2015.

In other business, the Village Board hired attorney Ken Pallotta to help the village acquire some property through the Cook County no-cash bid program.

Huisman said the property involved is at 1540 E. 162nd St. It is the entrance to Gouwens Park and is located behind Seton Academy near the Bishop Ford Freeway.

The county’s no-cash bid program allows local governments to acquire properties whose owners have become delinquent on their tax bills. If the county approves South Holland’s bid to gain the property, the owner would still have one year to pay their tax bills before it would officially be turned over to the village.

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