KITCHENER -- Council has approved a $44 million contract to renovate the regional police central division building in Kitchener.

The project for the building at 200 Frederick St. was identified in the 2018 master plan for regional facilities. This plan was meant to address capacity issues at the current central division at 134 Frederick St.

At their Tuesday meeting, council said the ability to forge ahead with a major capital project like this is a result of good planning.

"Many other municipalities have not been able to continue with their capital budgets because of some of the negative impacts of COVID-19," said Coun. Sean Strickland. "This is a strong vote of confidence in the community and a reflection of good fiscal management."

The project is expected to be funded through property taxes and development charges over a 20-year period.

The renovation is expected to start at the end of February and be finished by July 2022.