Hyattsville breaks ground on new police headquarters

The city of Hyattsville is finally breaking ground on a new headquarters for the city’s police department.

Located just off Route 1, the new location on Hamilton Street near the intersection with Queens Chapel Road is actually more centrally located, which the city says will ultimately lead to faster response times to some neighborhoods.

“In this profession, seconds matter,” said Hyattsville Chief of Police Jarod Towers. “This relocates us and centralizes us in the city and reduces response time to Ward 3 and Ward 5 of the city from two minutes down to 30 to 45 seconds.”

He also said that while it makes more of the city more accessible to the department, it also makes the department more accessible to the city, too.

“It’s going to give us an opportunity to engage the community on a much larger platform,” Towers said. “It’s hard for us right now to have the community in our current facility.”

For now, construction crews have a lot of work to do before it becomes a pristine, four-story stat-of- the-art policing building. The inside was closed, but outside the bricks were faded and the white paint that frames the windows and the structure had been peeling off one layer at a time.

Towers said, the city bought the property back in 2008, but delays, a pandemic, and inflation, have all slowed the process down. But city leaders say the wait will be worth it.

“It’s also going to provide desperately needed office space; it’s going to provide an arms and evidence processing space, a secure vehicle processing area,” said Hyattsville city administrator Tracey Douglas.

Better computer labs and a bigger training space will also let the city become a place that can host regional partners for meetings and training collaboration.

Additionally, a bigger building with multiple entrances also means “that our victims and our witnesses go in and out of our police department from separate entrances from our suspects to ensure that our witnesses are not identified, that we’re not posing safety concerns to those people,” Towers said.

“When we cut this ribbon and everyone gets to tour this building you’re going to be amazed at the work and thoughtfulness that went into this facility.”

Construction is expected to take about 18 months.

John Domen

John started working at WTOP in 2016 after having grown up in Maryland listening to the station as a child. While he got his on-air start at small stations in Pennsylvania and Delaware, he's spent most of his career in the D.C. area, having been heard on several local stations before coming to WTOP.

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