The Auckland City Police are set to make a move from their towering CDB station for bigger and better digs across town.
The move means the current Ponsonby station will shut down - but police are looking to open another central city station to ensure their presence is felt in the area.
The Herald can today reveal that the current Auckland Central police station on the corner of Cook and Vincent Sts will shut down in mid-2019 and staff will relocate to a new site on College Hill.
The current station - a 9-storey office tower with a floor area of 4580sq m, basement levels and the out of commission custody cells below - is owned by police and according to QV, is worth $35 million.
Auckland City District staff have operated from the site since it was purpose-built in 1967.
The new station at 13-15 College Hill spans five levels above ground and two in the basement, and is 6279sq m.
Commissioner Mike Bush said the new site would be redeveloped and renovated to serve police needs.
Police would lease the building but details of the agreement will not be released due to commercial sensitivities.
Likewise, police won't comment on the refurbishment costs as the plans were still being finalised and going through a tender process.
"I am delighted to confirm the lease signing that will enable the move to a more modern, fit-for-purpose Auckland Central Police Hub," Bush told the Herald.
"This will mean improved working conditions for staff, better operational functionality, and enable more responsive policing services to the public."
Bush said the move came after an "extensive" search for a suitable property.
Police had looked for a number of years for a site that was an improvement on the current station, described as cramped and dated by some staff.
Bush said the new site would ensure continued service delivery and value for money.
"It is a key project in police's longer term property strategy," he said.
"Police are committed to maintaining a substantial presence within Auckland City and enabling our staff to deploy and deliver policing services into the future within this rapidly growing city and surrounding communities."
The Ponsonby police station, located near the top of College Hill, would close.
Staff would be relocated between the new site and the Avondale station.
Auckland City District Commander Karyn Malthus said police intended to find an "additional facility" in the CBD area to ensure a "continued presence".
"I am confident this will improve community access to police," she said.
Malthus said she welcomed the new station.
"The new property location has good access to transport links and arterial routes within the CBD and across Tāmaki Makaurau, which is important for ensuring we are able to deliver world class policing services to the public," she said.
"The building will be upgraded with a new fit out to accommodate the growth in staffing numbers over the coming years. It will house nearly 400 staff and includes more than 150 car parks, with additional public parking nearby."
Plans for the future of the current central station and Ponsonby site have not been finalised.
Bush said the organisation would soon undertake a "feasibility and options study" to consider the long term options for the existing properties.
In October last year the Herald reported that the cells at Auckland Central had been decommissioned, with prisoners shipped off to a purpose-built custody unit at Mt Eden Prison instead.
The Auckland Custody Unit sits next to the new remand prison - which opened in 2011 - and houses anyone arrested in the central city area.