SANTA FE — Construction of the new Santa Fe Justice Center reached a major milestone Friday as crews erected the first concrete walls that will house the city’s police department and municipal court.

Chris Bolian, superintendent of Durotech, the contractor overseeing construction, said things are on track for the building to be ready by the end of the summer.

Crews will soon begin pouring in paving, and welders will begin work finishing off the rest of the structure, Bolian said.

The justice center, which is going up near FMs 1764 and 646, will include an emergency operations center, holding cells and offices.

City and police officials have been out to the site regularly to check on the progress of construction since a groundbreaking ceremony in October, Bolian said.

The building, which will more than double the size of the current police department, has been a longtime coming.

The city has long acknowledged the need to replace the existing building, which was constructed in the 1950s.

Voters with concerns over previous proposals’ cost and scope rejected three earlier bond proposals to build the new justice center.

A stripped-down proposal met with success last May, and Santa Fe police officers will have some new digs to look forward to later this year.

A large multipurpose room will house municipal court one day a week. It will double as an officer training room and forum for community events.

Contact reporter Alex Macon at 409-683-5244 or alex.macon@galvnews.com.

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