This summer, the city plans to break ground on a $5 million public safety training center the first of its kind in the state and the Pacific Northwest, Mayor Tammy de Weerd said Wednesday.
Featuring an indoor shooting range, mock scenario village, classrooms and dog-training equipment, the facility will be geared toward multi-agency major catastrophe training for first responders, including police, fire and public works.
De Weerd called the collaboration unprecedented. The shared-use facilitys mock scenario village will provide a much-needed resource where we can all come together and train as a region, she said.
The facility will be at the Meridian Police Department north of Interstate 84 off Locust Grove Road, next to the Idaho State Police Headquarters, Peace Officer Standards Training and the Idaho State University Emergency Management and Fire Services campus.
Construction of the 31,000-square-foot facility should be completed in mid-2015.
Other highlights from de Weerds 11th annual speech:
- More than 1,400 jobs were created in Meridian last year, with more than 900 in the fields of healthcare, administrative, professional and science. Meridians unemployment rate is 5 percent.
- Of the more than $400 million in residential and commercial development in 2013, one-third came from commercial projects like Scentsys office tower and The Village at Meridian.
- The city is partnering with the YMCA to build a new facility in South Meridian. The city also is partnering with the Boys and Girls Club of Ada County for a new gymnasium and expanded recreation programs.
- After nearly a year of detours, the Meridian split corridor opened in September. The citys next big road project, rebuilding the I-84 Meridian Road interchange, gets under way this spring and will be completed in late 2015.
- Legacy awards went to the people responsible for conceiving, building and raising the money for the 60-acre, $25 million Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park: Julius son Eugene Kleiner and other members of the Kleiner family trust, Eldon Gray, Mike Huter and Mike Kleiner.
Cynthia Sewell: 377-6428, Twitter: @CynthiaSewell