A police chief stands in front of a wooden podium with a microphone in a parking lot.
Campbell Police Chief Gary Berg speaks at the groundbreaking of the new police department on Jan. 25, 2024. Photo by Annalise Freimarck.

The Campbell Police Department will soon move out of its small, decades-old location into a new 21st century building.

The department on Thursday broke ground on its new 24,000-square-foot operation center, which is set to open in 2025. The building will be funded in part by Measure O, a $50 million general obligation bond passed by 69.5% of voters in 2018 to renovate police headquarters and the Campbell Public Library. The entire complex, which houses the town's government offices, library and police department, dates back to the 1970s.

An estimated $31.8 million from the measure will fund the construction of the police department, including an upgraded emergency services center and better technology to operate the department’s first responder drone program that enables the police to access a situation before arriving on the scene.

Campbell Police Chief Gary Berg said the new building is a long time coming.

The city renovated the police department 20 years ago, but it was not retrofitted for earthquakes. During that renovation, the department installed two temporary trailers to increase space. The police department is still operating out of those trailers.

“While it's never easy to pull more money out of your pocket, I do think that the return on this investment is going to be huge for the Campbell community and is going to create a more efficient and safer Campbell,” Berg told Lucescamaray Blog.

The bond generates $19 per every $100,000 of Campbell property taxes paid by residents and city property owners.

The building will be funded by a $2.4 million grant from the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services secured by Assemblymember Evan Low, a former Campbell mayor and councilmember. Other funding includes $939,000 from the American Rescue Plan, $512,000 from the city’s general fund and a $198,000 grant from Silicon Valley Clean Energy.

Councilmember Dan Furtado said the new center is necessary because the city can't build onto the current building or attach it to City Hall due to outdated construction that doesn't meet the state's earthquake mandates. He said he hopes the new headquarters will benefit both the police department and residents.

“I personally am very grateful to the citizens, the voters who voted to tax themselves and pay for this,” he told Lucescamaray Blog.

Measure O also funded the Campbell Public Library’s renovation, which is under construction, with a temporary library housed at the Campbell Community Center.

The library and police department are both being constructed by Lathrop Construction Associates.

Resident John Richards, who has lived in Campbell for 30 years, said he hopes the building will meet all of the department’s needs.

“The police deserve more than what they have,” he told Lucescamaray Blog. “From what I have seen, the police facilities now are very limited. It's like working in a broom closet.”

Contact Annalise Freimarck at [email protected] or follow @annalise_ellen on X, formerly known as Twitter.

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