Police and Fire and Rescue Service to move to Rooke

The Royal Gibraltar Police and the Fire and Rescue Service will be moving to the area of Rooke. This was revealed in Parliament.

The new buildings are expected to be paid for by Carlton Properties, the company behind the Government's preferred proposal for a new development in the site.

Its plot has been reduced in size from the original Expressions of Interest to accommodate the Essential Services' new headquarters..

Earlier this month we saw plans for a major development at Rooke that would combine low-rise commercial spaces and green parks with three residential towers.

In Parliament today, following questions from GSD member Damon Bossino we learnt more of the Government's plans for the site, which is also expected to include the area behind the current parcel post depot.

The Royal Gibraltar Police will be vacating its current headquarters at New Mole House to move to the area. It will be located close to the Fire and Rescue Service which will also move out of its current premises in Alameda Estate.

Although the Deputy Chief Minister said the Government had an estimated cost for the two new buildings, this was not revealed in Parliament as a decision still hasn't been taken on how and who will build them -whether this will be done in-house or will go to tender.

Plans for the new fire station have been approved by the Chief Fire Officer who told GBC he was excited at the prospect of a new home. The current station has housed the fire service for the past 80 years and Colin Ramirez hopes the new premises will take it forward for the next 80. The Government gave a guesstimate of works taking 12 to 18 months once permits are in place.

And all these ideas are subject to permits and planning. The tender for the new development has still not been awarded. Discussions with Carlton Properties, the preferred bidder for the new development at Rooke are ongoing with Joseph Garcia saying 80 percent of the area would be green and accessible to the public. He explained the bid had come about after the two preferred interested parties had been asked to present a joint bid.

He however would not be drawn into what supermarket will form part of the proposed new development, saying these are commercial decisions to be taken. Joseph Garcia confirmed however that if parking spaces were lost at Europort Road these would be available at Rooke.