The Whanganui Police Hub project has won Government support and plans are under way for a new hub for Whanganui justice and social agencies which would also replace the ageing Whanganui Central Police Station.
Police Minister Stuart Nash on Friday announced $25 million in new infrastructure spending to improve facilities for the wider community and for staff who work in a number of justice and social services.
Nash said the support was won through the $50 billion Covid-19 Response and Recovery Fund.
"The project is one of the 'shovel-ready' proposals put forward by local councils, iwi, and community groups in the wake of Covid-19."
Mayor Hamish McDouall said it was exciting for the Whanganui region.
"It's really great news," he said. "There has many a lot of work put into it from numerous different bodies and [Whanganui District] Council has been involved.
"To have it finally realised, that we are going to get a new police station, it's really exciting."
Nash said the new Whanganui Police hub would create significant social and economic benefits for the region.
"In partnership with the communities of Whanganui, this project has been a high priority for local police," Nash said.
"The police station replacement will play a big part in the economic recovery of the region. It meets both social and economic objectives as we recover from the impact of Covid-19," Nash said.
Nash expected the project to generate around 100 jobs and support hundreds of others.
"The existing Whanganui Central Police Station is something of a 'period piece' and is no longer fit for purpose. It was built more than 50 years ago and it is completely outdated," Nash said.
"The old one is looking tired, actually very tired," he said.
"It's been a long time since we have had this level of Government investment in Whanganui. It's been a tremendous few months."
Nash said police had been working with local iwi, the district council, other Government agencies like the Ministry of Justice and community groups to plan the ideal facilities for the region.
Options include redeveloping the existing site or co-locating and integrating multiple agencies on a possible new site to create a larger precinct of social and justice services in Whanganui.
"Next steps would involve a decision on a site, design works, procurement and tendering, and construction. It's possible the first 'sod-turning' could be in 2021," Nash said.