Pa. breaks ground at site of future State Police Academy facility
“The new academy will support the highest level of instruction for cadets, troopers, and our law enforcement partners,” State Police Commissioner Col. Christopher Paris said
HERSHEY, Pa. — Gov. John Shapiro and members of his administration on Monday broke ground on a new Pennsylvania State Police Academy in Hershey.
According to the administration, the modernization project replaces outdated infrastructure with state-of-the-art facilities, representing the most comprehensive update to the academy since it opened in 1960. Multiple new buildings totaling 366,000 square feet are proposed for the 146-acre site, which includes a five-story building with modern classrooms, administrative offices, 300 individual cadet dormitories, a 500-seat auditorium and a spacious cafeteria.
A $205.5 million general construction contract for the project was awarded to Wohlsen Construction Co. of Lancaster. Other contracts are $37 million for HVAC to Midline Mechanical LLC of Ephrata, $35.7 million for electrical to the Fairfield Company of Lititz, and $20.1 million for plumbing to Jay R. Reynolds Inc. of Willow Street.
“The new Pennsylvania State Police Academy will be a state-of-the-art facility second to none in the country that will give cadets hands-on learning opportunities that will better prepare them for service in our communities,” Shapiro said. “I firmly believe that every Pennsylvanian deserves to be safe and feel safe in their community. That starts with ensuring police departments are well-staffed, well-trained, well-funded and well-equipped. Policing is a noble profession, and good people want to come here to this academy and train for a career in public service — and it’s on us to invest in them and give them the resources they need to succeed.”
The new academy will also have a physical education building for self-defense training, water safety course and fitness conditioning, as well as indoor and outdoor tactical villages that will host simulations of high-risk incidents, such as active shooters, hostage situations and barricaded individuals.
Additional facilities will include a new headquarters for the Bureau of Emergency and Special Operations, horse stables for the mounted unit, a central supply warehouse and a vehicle garage.
“Updated facilities and amenities are long overdue here at the Pennsylvania State Police Academy, the nation’s premier law enforcement training facility,” State Police Commissioner Col. Christopher Paris said. “The new academy will support the highest level of instruction for cadets, troopers, and our law enforcement partners.”
According to the administration, the existing academy will remain operational throughout construction, which is scheduled to begin immediately. The project includes demolition of several existing structures and is expected to be complete by 2028.
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