GEORGETOWN, Texas -- Growing pains come along with every population expansion in every Texas town, but Georgetown is trying to stay ahead of the curve with a multi-million dollar facility designed to keep the town safe.
The $29.3 million public safety facility will sit on DB Wood Road next to Fire Station #5. It will house both police and fire, with room for training on-site.
Walking through the square, Georgetown still has a small town feel.
"Close enough to Austin that if we really wanted to go to the big city, we could easily," said long-time resident Richard Cutts.
Cutts moved to Georgetown in 1982 and says Georgetown is quickly becoming its own big city.
"It's got probably three times as many traffic lights as when we moved here," Cutts said.
It has more traffic, more people and more work for law enforcement.
"We hear a lot more sirens than you used to in the '80s," Cutts said.
It's one reason voters approved a bond in 2011 for the public safety and training facility.
"Everything you could want in one place," Georgetown Police Chief Wayne Nero said about the facility.
Right now police work out of a small, brick building downtown. Chief Nero says they've simply outgrown the space.
"We're in about 19,000 square feet of space in a 100-year-old building. When you look at our current size and our potential for growth, it's time we update our facilities and start thinking about our future," Chief Nero said.
The future is a 76,000 sq. ft, two-story building with enough room for the entire police department, fire administration office and a 911 center.
"Which is generally not the norm," said Nero. "The relationship here is very good between police and fire. We both understand the holistic approach. When something bad happens, we're both going to be there anyway."
Currently, officers train in Hutto. The new building will allow them stay in town with a slow-speed driving track, indoor tactical training and an enclosed firing range of their own.
"Money well spent. You cannot put a price on capability," said Chief Nero.
The facility is set to open in September 2014.
A similar multi-million dollar joint training building will be up for a vote this November in Round Rock.