The new facility will include a 22-cell custody block and offices for police and staff in Bedford.
Willmott Dixon will also undertake associated external works, including a car park.
The new custody suite will replace a temporary variant at Bedfordshire Police’s Kempston headquarters.
Bedfordshire Police & Crime Commissioner Kathryn Holloway said, “Since the old Greyfriars station in Bedford closed down because its custody suite was not fit for purpose, its replacement has been being planned. This has been a priority for me and I’m absolutely delighted to get this build underway on my watch. This is essential as our detention staff and officers deserve to have the best working environment we can provide and we need to remember that those in police custody have not yet gone before a court and are innocent until proven guilty.”
Willmott Dixon regional managing director Chris Tredget said: “We are delighted to build on our strong pedigree in the blue light sector to deliver a new state of the art custody suite for Bedfordshire Police. Having built similar facilities in the region, we are collaborating closely Bedfordshire Police to ensure that the facility will meet all of their requirements and needs, providing a state-of-the-art building and better environment for all.”
Willmott Dixon’s experience of building facilities for the emergency services includes recently handing over a custody centre and operational hub in Exeter for Devon and Cornwall Constabulary and a combined campus for Lincolnshire Fire, Police and Ambulance services. Projects currently being built include the delivery of a £20m control centre in Hull for Humberside Police and the £37m new headquarters for Merseyside Police in Liverpool.
The Bedford contract was procured using the Scape Major Works England and Northern Ireland framework.