SEMMES, Ala. (WKRG) — The City of Semmes opened its first public safety complex today…a sign of the 11-year-old city’s expansion. What used to be a Dollar General, is now home to both the Semmes fire and police departments.
The new complex at 6180 Lott Rd. serves as a fire station and the city’s first police precinct for their new police department that is still underway. Residents filled the driveway to join the celebration and get a firsthand look at the city’s new facility.
Shannon Jenkins has worked in Semmes for five and a half years and she says the new complex is a big accomplishment.
“It’s going to be a very very big change and growth in the City of Semmes,” said Jenkins. “I’m very very proud of it”
For years, Mobile County Sheriff’s Office handled Semmes’ law enforcement needs but last year, the City decided to establish its own police department.
The fire department became a paid entity in 2016. Before then, the department was run by volunteers who worked out of mobile homes and sheds.
Semmes’ Mayor Brandon Van Hook says this is a big day for the city as expansion continues.
“This is a forever stamp that they we’re putting public safety as a priority. This is why we’re excited to move forward with policing, with our fire station,” said Van Hook. “This area has always been kind of an area that we need more involvement in and that’s why we chose this area.”
Fire Chief Kevin Brooks tells WKRG News 5 he always wanted to build the complex at this location, it just took the vision to execute it.
“We need a presence in this area,” said Brooks. “A police presence and also a fire presence and just being accessible to these major roadways like Kushla McLeod and McCrary Roads and our future bypass that’s coming through here which will be easily accessible to respond to emergency calls.”
There are more major projects in store for Semmes. City leaders plan to remodel the public works facility to serve as their new police headquarters. They’re also building a new city hall.