Maple Grove Police Training Facility Expansion Nears Completion
Law enforcement officers in the northwest metro will soon have more space for high-tech training.
The expansion of Maple Grove’s North Metro Regional Public Safety Training Facility, from 22,000 square feet to 58,000 square feet, is almost complete.
The new facility will house an additional gun range, as well as different types of reality-based training rooms where officers can practice de-escalation techniques.
“The instructor can put you into a situation that’s very similar to what happened on the street,” explained Al Freng, range manager. “That’s really what they want to do… learn from those mistakes and try to replicate those in training and let everybody try and see what solutions they come up with.”
The expansion will include a reality-based training area with movable walls. The walls will function like set pieces to replicate locations police commonly get called.
“It’s kind of like cubicles on steroids,” said Freng. “Big wall panels that can be moved around and you can build anywhere from what looks like a house, apartment building, long hallways, places where police officers go on calls.”
Training in Hand-to-Hand Combat
The new facility will also house a large mat room where officers can train in the art of hand-to-hand combat.
“Fights are dangerous for everyone,” said Freng. “They’re really practicing to get someone onto the ground and then subdue them quickly without injury.”
Freng says now more than ever, it’s important for law enforcement to learn from incidents of the past, like the 2021 shooting death of Daunte Wright, when Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter said she mistook her hand gun for a taser.
“Anyone who’s watched that video saw that there was a lot of stress on that officer, and that’s when humans make mistakes,” Freng stated. “We want to replicate stress and that’s how you do that in a simulation.”
The $17 million project was made possible through funding from Maple Grove, Plymouth, Brooklyn Park and Hennepin County. The state also contributed $3.5 million in bonding dollars.
The training facility serves 20 different local, state, county and federal law enforcement agencies.
The North Metro Regional Public Safety Training Facility expansion is expected to be fully completed by Memorial Day.
Visit the facility’s website for more information.