New sheriff’s substation work lagging
Easements still required from two Lexington Park neighbors
Work to convert an old rescue squad into a new substation for the sheriff’s office in Lexington Park is now a year behind schedule.
St. Mary’s County government is waiting on two easement agreements from neighbors of the old rescue squad building — a bank and a church. “We just need those completed prior to construction,” John Groeger, deputy director of the St. Mary’s County Department of Public Works and Transportation, said this week in an interview. While the project is ready to have a construction contract issued once the easements are secured, it’s likely that work wouldn’t start until next spring, he said. The project is expected to take up to 11 months.
Sheriff Tim Cameron (R) said people in the Lexington Park community are anticipating the new substation and have asked him when it was going to be built, but didn’t know the exact cause for the delay. “I had not heard there even were issues with the easements,” he said.
The neighbors of the building at 21633 Great Mills Road are a branch of PNC Bank and The Church of the Ascension.
The Lexington Park Community Policing Unit is currently renting space on the other side of Great Mills Road from the old
Lexington Park rescue squad building, which is to be gutted and renovated into the new substation. The sheriff’s office is paying about $525 a month for the temporary space, Cameron said, plus a small amount for utilities.
Whenever the new substation is built, the community policing unit will be housed there, along with patrol personnel assigned to Lexington Park, Cameron said. Those patrol units now use space at the old Carver school on Lincoln Avenue in the Southampton neighborhood. Cameron said that the Carver location is “close, but not in the heart of Lexington Park.”
The sheriff said he hopes the easement issues are worked out soon. “I still think it’s a good use of the building,” he said, and would be a highly visible police presence on Great Mills Road, which would “promote good interaction” with the community.
“I think it will be a good focal point,” Commissioner Todd Morgan (R), who represents the Lexington Park area, said of the substation. “We’re putting our money where our mouth is. I’m looking forward to it opening,” he said.
St. Mary’s County government bought the 17,327-squarefoot property in 2014 for $450,000.
The fiscal 2017 county budget stated that construction on the $2.9 million substation project was expected in the fall of 2016.
The 6,060-square-foot building will have its roof, windows, doors, interior partitions and utility infrastructure demolished, including the removal of asbestos, Groeger said.
The renovated building will include processing, meeting and conference room space, three holding cells, two interview rooms, a roll call and training room, break room, evidence bay and storage area as well as a fenced vehicle sally port.
The Lexington Park Volunteer Rescue Squad moved into the building in 1976, and moved into a new facility nearby on FDR Boulevard in 2014.
The $2.9 million project to renovate the old Lexington Park Volunteer Rescue Squad building into a new substation for the sheriff’s office on Great Mills Road is a year behind schedule. Two easements from neighbors are holding up construction.