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Tontitown Opens New Police Department, City Hall

TONTITOWN (KFSM) -- A new building to house local government offices has opened in Tontitown.

The more than 12,000-square-foot structure sits in the same spot as the former city hall and police department, but now houses all city departments.

"We actually have everything in the city all under one roof right now," said Tontitown Mayor Paul Colvin. "Before, we were kind of spread out into different buildings."

Lack of space was a major issue plaguing city government, before this dream became a reality.

"We were running out of space for employees. We had at the time employees sharing desks," Colvin said.

The offices are now open for business, with an official opening ceremony expected in the next several months.

The west side of the building houses city offices, like public works and planning. The center of the building is home to city hall and the Tontitown council chambers. The police department comprises the entire east side of the building.

"Having a new building gives us the tools we need, and the room we need, to do our job efficiently to serve the public," said Wes Hart, captain at Tontitown Police Department.

Among changes for the department include additional work space and more storage area. A secure evidence room was also added, as was a sally port that offers shelter and space for cruiser maintenance.

In city hall, stepping inside the front doors offers reminders of Tontitown's Italian heritage. The entrance includes a wall of wine barrel staves, each inscribed with the names of Tontitown's founders.

"When people come in and look up 'What's that?' These are the people who actually settled Tontitown more than 100 years ago," Colvin said.

Today, the new structure remembers the past, with an eye on the future.

A future with a rapidly growing population.

"As Northwest Arkansas grows, we're going to grow," Hart said. "More officers for our department are in our future plans, so we've adapted the building for future growth."