The Calgary Police Service’s plan to build a new police training facility is not expected to derail a police college in Fort Macleod. Fort Macleod Mayor Shawn Patience questioned Calgary officials last week after he learned Calgary Police Service wants to build its new training facility on 627 acres in Rocky View County.
“Does it impact the police college? The mayor’s office and the deputy chief of police are saying no,” Patience said Monday. “It should have little impact on our project.”
Rocky View County council was to hear Tuesday a proposal from Calgary Police Service to buy four quarters of agricultural land between Conrich and Chestermere.
The facility would be used by Calgary Police Service recruits, tactical team, firearms training unit and mounted patrol.
“There certainly was concern there over what impact that would have on our provincial training centre,” Patience said. “I was concerned at that point it was going to have significant impact on our project.”
The province said in August 2006 it would build the Alberta Police and Peace Officer Training Centre. The government has not yet followed through on that promise.
Patience received assurances from Calgary Mayor Dave Bronconnier and Deputy Chief Jim Hornby their project would not compete with the police college.
“Their existing facilities are no long suitable,” Patience said. “This is simply an upgrade.”
The new facility would be used for training that already takes place, and would give Calgary Police Service its own dedicated stables, outdoor shooting range, a new driving track and an area in which officers will be trained to diffuse explosive devices.
Patience was told Calgary is supportive of the police college. At present Calgary Police Service sends its members to the Canadian Police Centre in Ottawa for some training.
“You have to take an optimistic approach but that doesn’t mean you can’t get worried,” Patience said. “The lack of progress on the (police college) project breeds that kind of cynicism.”
Patience asked Solicitor General Frank Oberle and Livingstone-Macleod MLA Evan Berger for confirmation the Calgary project will not impact the police college. He has not received a response.