SOUTH PORTLAND — After seeing a review of South Portland Central Fire and Police station facilities on Aug. 31, city councilors said they would be in favor of forming a temporary committee to guide a possible renovation or construction project.

The committee, which could include three volunteer South Portland residents, would analyze city-owned facilities and make a recommendation to the city council about the Central fire and police stations, 684 Broadway and 30 Anthoine St.

The new South Portland Fire Station at Cash Corner was officially opened in May. City officials are considering renovations to the Central Fire Station on Broadway and police station on Anthoine Street. Gregory Rec photo/Press Herald

Both the Central fire and police building are going to require significant investments within the next five years, Owens McCollough, a representative from Sebago Technics, the engineering company hired to conduct a review of the facilities, said.

“These facilities, they’ve served a purpose – they’ve done a great job for the city over the years, but 50, 60 years later, the city has outgrown those facilities,” he said. “They’ve become aged an antiquated and just don’t meet the functional needs of the fire and police, not unlike what we uncovered with public services.”

McCullough and representatives presented six different options the city could pursue to renovate, rebuild and/or relocate the fire and police stations, each costing between $21 million and $43 million.

The city council was asked whether an ad hoc committee that could evaluate and provide recommendations regarding city-owned facilities would be viable. Councilors said they would be in favor of a committee and discussed what type of members they would prefer as well as how residential involvement could be implemented.

City Manager Scott Morelli said in a position paper to the city council that the purpose of the committee could be to assist in evaluating city-owned facilities and present a recommendation to the council about the best course of action, including the financing information.

South Portland is currently constructing a new middle school building on the Memorial Middle School site. Mahoney Middle School, on Ocean Street, will be vacated and the property will revert back to the city, Morelli said. The committee could be tasked with determining whether the property is suitable for a city facility.

South Portland Central Fire Station at 684 Broadway. Courtesy image

Membership for the ad hoc committee is proposed to include city staff, the fire and police chiefs as well as three members of the public.

Mayor Misha Pride said he thought a committee would be valuable because the project could be large and time-consuming for the council.

Councilor Deqa Dhalac said she thought the public should be involved and would be in support of the project. She recommended that city councilors take a tour of the South Portland Central Fire and Police Station if they hadn’t yet.

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