The ribbon was cut Thursday to mark the official opening of the new Orillia OPP detachment, almost a year after staff moved into the new digs on University Avenue.
Politicians and OPP officials were on hand to speak about the importance of the modernized facility.
“This new, 34,000-square-foot facility is equipped with all of the tools our local OPP need to do their jobs effectively, including a modern infrastructure design to support ever-changing technology requirements …” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones.
The $20-million building is part of a $201-million investment by the province to replace 10 aging OPP facilities, Jones said, noting it was done through a public-private partnership to ensure the cost to build it remained the same from start to finish.
“It is to the credit of our police services that they have been able to do such excellent work in often outdated facilities, but no more,” she said. “This new building will be a source of pride for the entire OPP and, I hope, for the residents in the City of Orillia and the surrounding region.”
The Orillia and Barrie OPP detachments were amalgamated in Orillia, increasing the need for a larger facility than the previous one on Peter Street. It is now the largest standalone OPP detachment in the province, with 163 people working there.
“With this tremendous support from our provincial government and the Ministry of the Solicitor General, under the leadership of our solicitor general, the Honourable Sylvia Jones, our dedicated Orillia OPP members now have modern workspace and tools to continue delivering the efficient, professional policing services our local communities deserve,” said OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique.
“This project is the accumulation of countless hours of planning and construction work that has brought us here today.”
As the region grows, infrastructure must grow with it, Simcoe North MPP Jill Dunlop said, adding the new detachment is an example of that.
“This $20-million facility will better serve the people of Orillia and Simcoe County by ensuring that our local OPP officers have the resources they need to keep us safe by keeping our roads and communities safe,” she said.
The new building was funded entirely by the province. It includes 12 holding cells, secure areas to hold evidence, a closed-circuit television system, and other security features.