SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah Police continue to develop their presence along the Martin Luther King Junior Avenue corridor.
City leaders broke ground on the new Savannah police central precinct back in 2018.
But before construction could start crews had to demolish several buildings in that area, all part of the historic Meldrim Row.
But one historic home was spared. And after some remolding, it’s ready for its new tenants.
This project checks a few boxes for the City of Savannah’s strategic plan - good government, public safety, and neighborhood revitalization.
The Caretakers Cottage is also funded by SPLOST.
In just five months, the renovation transformed the Caretaker’s Cottage from this to what it is today.
The move-in ready, two-story duplex will be home to two Savannah Police officers.
“We believe with an increased presence, it is anticipated that public safety in this area will improve," said Savannah Police Chief Roy Minter during Wednesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.
In exchange for reduced rent, the officers will help maintain the neighboring Central Precinct.
Chief Minter says he believes the cottage will enhance recruiting and retention, bringing officers closer to those they are serving and protecting.
We learned today that one of the officers moving in commuted three hours round-trip just to get to work.
Chief Minter said, “And by living in communities where we serve, we will continue to build relationships with our community stakeholders.”
The Caretaker Cottage is a collaborative effort, bringing together the City of Savannah, the police department and Historic Savannah Foundation, who aided in making sure the more than century-old house was properly restored.
Ryan Arvay, Historic Properties Coordinator for the Historic Savannah Foundation said, “These are hard projects. Lots of unforeseen nuances that can spring up. And they handled each one extremely well. We’re very grateful to be involved in this project, we hope that it is a foreshadowing of future projects with the city.”
The officers will be moving in at the end of the week.
Savannah City Council voted to add the Caretaker Cottage renovation to SPLOST 6, putting nearly a half a million dollars toward the project.