The renovation and expansion of the Kansas City Police Headquarters re-positions the facility, originally built in 1938, for another 70 years of service to the community while respecting the character of the historic 100,000-square-foot structure.

An important goal of this project was to increase transparency and expand Police interaction with the community. This involved extensive changes to the first floor including a monumental public lobby, unobtrusive security, and the addition of a large community meeting space.

Community meetings, previously held on the fifth floor, were minimally accessible to the public. The new addition on the ground floor allows the public to engage in the Board of Police Commissioners meetings and serves as a venue for Police community outreach programming.

The addition was an opportunity to engage the original and historic Art Deco structure in dialogue with adjacent Brutalist Municipal Court buildings. The Art Deco pattern of the concrete roof structure is found throughout Police Headquarters in both ornamental and functional roles; its adaptation here allows for multi-directional cantilevers and supports the increased weight of the vegetated green roof.

The building is technically innovative and incorporates a custom engineered thermally broken beam and slab structure. The thermal break runs the entirety of the building enclosure and isolates the interior exposed concrete structure from the exterior exposed concrete structure. This presented many thermal and structural challenges. The reinforcing bar was woven into place in the field by local ironworkers. One stated “I wouldn’t want to do this type of work every day, but it’s exciting to be part of something special.”

Beyond addressing space requirements, the Police Department wanted to create a welcoming first impression for visitors (PERCEPTION), and a facility suited for collaboration, efficiency, team-building, and celebration (PURPOSE). Central to the design, too, was the need to communicate the Department's rich history of community service through a dignified and at times monumental space.

The renovation corrects many years of deferred maintenance and features energy saving and water conservation strategies. Increased indoor air quality, natural light, and accessible routes provide a modern workplace for the Police and equal access for the public.

The project scope also included repairing the core and shell of the building - including exterior masonry restoration, building envelope improvements, window and roof replacement, streetscape design and systems upgrades. The systems upgrades are housed in an addition to the north of the historic structure, which increased useable space within.

The city’s commitment to LEED guided design decisions toward sustainable solutions. Anticipated to receive LEED Gold certification, sustainability features include: re-use of existing building materials, integration of efficient HVAC systems, low-flow plumbing fixtures, daylighting and efficient lighting, and a greenroof.