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Highway Patrol starts work toward new post

SOUTH POINT — June 25 is the due date for bids on the new multi-million dollar facility planned for the Ironton Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

The new structure will replace the outmoded facility at South Point on Delta Lane that the patrol leases from Larry Carter, owner of the nearby Highland Memorial Gardens.

This comes months after the Ironton Post shifted its dispatchers to Jackson in a consolidation move.

“They moved the dispatchers to make better use of that resource. There are 18 or 19 people here who have outgrown the space,” said Lt. Michael Gore, commander of the Ironton Post. “We probably outgrew this place 10 or 12 years ago. This is a lease facility. The state is also trying to get away from leasing facilities.”

The current facility is a 1,700-square-foot structure that will be replaced with a 6,000-square-foot building to be located off Willow Branch off of Sand Road on four and a half acres owned by the post.

When the Post took over the building in the 1980s there were only seven troopers attached. Now there are 12 troopers, four sergeants, a commander, secretary and maintenance man.

Estimated costs for the structure are $1,080,000 for general trades; $90,000 for plumbing and fire protection; $90,000 for HVAC; and $240,000 for electrical. The bids are solicited by the Ohio Department of Administrative Services.

“We are ready to be in the facility,” Gore said.

There will be separate changing rooms for troopers since the post now has two women officers; a larger locker room area, larger squad room area for troopers and more office space.

There will also be better garage space. Currently the Post’s one-bay garage is also used for storage and can’t accommodate a cruiser for washing.

“We would have to call our friends at ODOT if we could use their garage,” he said. “This is something that has been awhile coming. We have been looking to get into a new facility probably since the mid 1980s.”