Safety First

Police substation gets some attention as first responders and military personnel celebrate Safety Fest

By George Slaughter, News Editor
Posted 4/27/22

The Katy Police Department substation at Katy Mills Mall has been open since the mall underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation in 2018-19. Yet while the substation has never had a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony, it enjoys a higher profile thanks to a new sign placed outside the station, which sits on the east side of the mall.

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Safety First

Police substation gets some attention as first responders and military personnel celebrate Safety Fest

Posted

The Katy Police Department substation at Katy Mills Mall has been open since the mall underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation in 2018-19. Yet while the substation has never had a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony, it enjoys a higher profile thanks to a new sign placed outside the station, which sits on the east side of the mall.

The higher profile is one way mall management saluted the police department as it hosted the Katy-Area Safety Fest Saturday and the malls east parking lot. Heidi MacMillan, Katy Mills general manager, said mall management wanted to make sure people are aware of and know about the substation.

“They’ve been incredible partners to us,” MacMillan said.

The substation is the second one the mall has had. The original substation, since closed, sat near where the mall’s general and security offices are, on the east side of the building near the food court.

The present substation sits in a location formerly occupied by the Texas Workforce Commission.

“The mall security does a great job,” Diaz said. “They are a great partner for us.”

Police Chief Noe Diaz said the substation has six officers assigned to it. More are expected as new business development, including the Katy Boardwalk Project, comes to that portion of the city. Diaz said it wasn’t just about serving the 22,000 Katy city residents, but serving the approximately 400,00 Katy area residents.

“It’s a very usable space for us,” Diaz said. “As we grow, we expect to bring in four or five more guys in the next 24 months.”

The substation features a row of desks with computers that are connected to other law enforcement agencies. There is a podium with a backdrop where officials can make announcements and hold news conferences as needed. Should officers have to make an arrest, the substation also has a room where the suspect can be held for a short time.

However, Diaz said he would not allow a police car to be parked at the substation because the nearby area is not gated. A police car has several thousand dollars’ worth of equipment and weapons, he said.

“We have a lot of guests that come from Highway 6 this way,” Diaz said. “The mall stays busy all the time. We have a Cheesecake Factory restaurant coming here, and they are working with other vendors to bring more businesses out here.”

Diaz described the mall as being “sort of the heartbeat of Katy” because it attracts so many people.

“It’s an attraction in the community, with more coming,” Diaz said, adding that the partnerships with other law enforcement agencies is important because the mall itself has property in both Harris and Fort Bend counties.

“I can’t thank them enough,” Diaz said. “We can’t do it alone. You need the partnerships.”

Saturday’s Safety Fest itself returned after a two-year hiatus compelled by the pandemic. The Katy police and fire departments, Harris County and Fort Bend County sheriff’s departments, Harris County Emergency Services District 48, and other first responder agencies had equipment for people to examine and the personnel to explain how everything worked.

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