Rialto City Council approves development process of new police department

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Rialto Police Department was built in 1973 with 39 sworn officers, but the department has since tripled in size, still operating in the same 18,000 square feet.

The Rialto Police Department was built in 1973 and employed 39 sworn officers, fast forward to 2022 there are 126 sworn officers, and that’s not including its part-time and civilian personnel.

The current building located at 128 N. Willow Ave., stands at around 18,000 square feet, but on April 26th the council approved a design-build-finance-operate-maintain process for a 100,000 square foot building on the same lot as the existing station.

“Reconstruction of a new police station is overdue and is an urgent need to consolidate all the various office spaces into a larger facility that will address current space needs as well as flexibility for future increases to staffing that will be required to fully serve the Rialto community at build-out with 150,000 residents. It is anticipated that the Police Department organization will grow in size to 150 sworn staff and 75 civilian staff,” said City Manager Marcus Fuller.

Some challenges the department has faced due to its ever-growing staff include a lack of lockers, no conference room, an overcrowded dispatch center, no training room, outdated detention cells, lack of restroom accommodations, no emergency operations center and more.

“This state-of-the-art facility will allow our police department to be fully functional, we need to move forward with this project expeditiously; especially due to the elevated crime rate we’re seeing across the country. I want to thank Rialto Police Department for attending tonight in support of the project and showing support for us as a council,” said Mayor Pro Tem Ed Scott.

Mayor Robertson also shared that with a handful of new housing developments in the city, a bigger department is needed.

Councilmember Andy Carrizales made a motion to move the item and Councilmember Rafael Trujillo made a second.

“We have a massive housing development coming to Rialto, so I don’t even know if 100,000 square feet will be enough space for the department as its sworn officers and personnel continues to grow, but it’s a start. We cannot keep thinking small,” said Robertson.

The design-build-finance-operate-maintain process is expected to be completed in a two year time frame; a completion date for the forthcoming project was not announced.

For more information, visit yourrialto.com.