New police HQ in 'No Man's Land' to house 2,500 cops - Chang
The Government has announced plans to build the country’s first multi-purpose police headquarters on 40 acres of land popularly called ‘No Man’s Land’ near Rema in south St Andrew in the Western Kingston police division.
The revelation was made by National Security Minister Dr Horace Chang as he opened the 2019-2020 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Tuesday.
Chang told the House that all non-geographic formations and specialised units of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), such as Narcotics, the National Intelligence Bureau, the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Branch, Cyber Security, among others, will be located at the new downtown headquarters.
He said the multi-facility headquarters will have customer-friendly reception areas as well as green spaces to allow for strong, acceptable community interface.
“This will represent the transformative approach this Government is taking to build the new Jamaica,” Chang said.
“The location of this facility in the heart of the western part of downtown Kingston will complement the government’s overall plan to revise and reposition Kingston City as a leading business district that is safe and orderly,” the security minister added.
Chang said “No Man’s Land, as it is sometimes called, will be a beacon of hope in our city and will elevate the space to represent hope, peace and prosperity.
“This empty piece of land in the middle of an area of social conflict, in fact political conflict at times, could be seen as an area of despair, where the police were once viewed as oppressive (but) will now become a beacon of hope for the people of the area.”
The security minister sought to reassure residents of western Kingston and south St Andrew that they will not be dislocated by the development. He said the National Housing Trust has undertaken to ensure that provision will be made for all socio-economic groupings in the area. Chang said there will be new jobs in the area.
He said the expectation is that, as downtown Kingston returns to its primacy, “we will see various segments of the population working there.
“And we expect family homes for attendants, cleaners, lawyers, doctors and business leaders all being able to live together around a shared urban space," Chang added.
He said this will be a signature activity and a signal mark of the government’s commitment to bringing the vision of a new Jamaica to pass.”
Meanwhile, the security minister said Mobile West will be constructed in Montego Bay to provide for 400 police professionals and state-of-the-art equipment with appropriate furnishings to boost the capacity of the JCF in that region.