N. Augusta city leaders approve $25M for new public safety HQ

Published: Feb. 7, 2023 at 10:11 PM EST
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NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - The North Augusta City Council voted to approve a $25 million budget for a new public safety headquarters.

City leaders are excited about the facility, but some are asking why it’s more than double the original price tag.

What was originally a $10 million project in 2017 is now more than double at $25 million.

City leaders say $21 million will go to the new police headquarters, and $3.9 million will go to architectural and other fees.

“We’re real excited about it. This has been a long time coming,” said Eric Presnell, North Augusta City Council.

North Augusta Public Safety HQ
North Augusta Public Safety HQ(WRDW)

The building will sit near the intersection of Georgia Avenue and Observatory Avenue and will house the North Augusta Public Safety department and the courts.

However, not everyone is excited about the new headquarters.

“I find it somewhat upsetting that the price jumped from 10 to 25,” said Mike Reed, neighbor. “It just seems a bit extravagant to me.”

Presnell says the rising costs of everything heavily impacted the budget. He tells us thanks to inflation, the cost of development when city leaders set the original budget in 2017 is nowhere near what it is now.

“Nobody’s property taxes will go up because of the cost of it. I think that’s a misconception,” said Presnell.

As for what happens with the old building once the new headquarters is up, city leaders say they’ll cross that bridge when they get there.

They say the groundbreaking for the new headquarters will be at the end of February, and they’re hoping to have the project completed by December 2025.