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Possible new police station coming to Columbia

A new police station could come to North Columbia.

The station or municipal center would be funded by the capital improvement tax renewal that council will soon vote on for the August ballot.

This would be just a renewal, a tax increase, that funds public safety and roads.

The city of Columbia is 64-square miles with a population of about 115,000 people.

Currently there is just one police station in downtown Columbia.

However, soon that could be changing according to Second Ward City Councilman Michael Trapp.

“I am excited about having a new police station, and also being able to improve our response times,” said Trapp.

North Columbia is an area where neighbors tell ABC 17 News is full of crime.

Blanche Merritt has lived in the same north Columbia home for 18 years.

We asked her if she has seen crime go up or down in the area.

She said, “It’s gotten worse in the area. There was one time this guy went down Parker Street here with a gun hanging out,” said Merritt.

Columbia crime statistics show there is certainly crime in the north part of town.

“Right now everything has to come from downtown so the north side and south side don’t get the same level of service as folks do who live closer to the central city, it just takes longer,” said Trapp.

Quicker response times is not the only promised benefit from this municipal service center.

On the website “SpeakUp Como” it says the new building will bring a community facility with public meeting rooms and other amenities, but at a cost of $9.5 million.

The money to fund the building would not come from a tax increase, rather the capital improvement tax which is approved by voters every 10 years.

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