(The Center Square) – Tennessee broke ground on a $415 million law enforcement training facility at Cockrill Bend in Nashville.
The Multi-Agency Law Enforcement Training Academy will be the training home of state and local law enforcement from around the state.
The bulk of the funding came from $355.7 million proposed by Gov. Bill Lee in the 2022-23 Tennessee budget but $29.5 million in funding coming from initial phases of the project under former Gov. Bill Haslam and $23 million spent in the 2021-22 budget for design work on the many aspects of the project.
Phase one of construction will begin by the spring while the final phase will begin in 2025. Cockrill Bend is the home of the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution prison. It has 800 acres of state-owned property along the Cumberland River in Nashville.
The project was identified as a $279 million need in a Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations’ infrastructure report released in early 2022.
The facility will include space for cadets to have housing and dining facilities along with in-service staff. It will also include a new administrative headquarters building for the Tennessee Department of Correction and the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security.
The facility will house more than 400 cadets and 200 in-service personnel on site.
“This outstanding new campus will allow our law enforcement officers to be trained in a truly state-of-the-art facility,” said Tennessee Lt. Governor Randy McNally, R-Oak Ridge. “The multi-agency nature of the MALETA campus will encourage collaboration between agencies and efficient use of taxpayer resources. Tennessee is one of the few states in the nation to invest in this type of shared law enforcement training campus facility. I believe this facility will be critical in ensuring our law enforcement officers remain the best in the nation at keeping citizens safe.”