New Joint Communications building in design phase

COLUMBIA, Mo. - At the end of August, 10 more people will start answering 911 calls at the Boone County Joint Communications Center as the department gets ready for its new building.

The new call center will be on the Sheriff's Department campus just north of Columbia off Highway 63.

In May, ABC 17 News reported county leaders set the budget for the center at more than $14 million, to be funded by a three-eighths- cent sales tax. 

"There are a lot of things to be considered. This is not your normal building that you would build. There is a lot of technology that goes into the building and there are a lot of people that need to be involved in this. So right now it's just working through the process," said Joe Piper with Joint Communications.

Boone County commissioners and Joint Communications are working with Mission Critical Partners which helps manage the project, and Architects Design Group, which is designing the building. 

On Monday, there was discussion about the location of generators, radio towers, and emergency water storage.

Tuesday, more details were hashed out between the commissioners and Piper.

"There are 70 doors if they all have swipe cards it's $2,000 a door," said Commissioner Karen Miller.

Each door now must be evaluated to determine if a swipe card is necessary.

What furniture is behind each of those doors is also being picked out.

"Furniture is a pretty critical piece, it is a 24/7 high-use furniture with special wiring, electrical needs and lighting needs," said Piper.

Picking out furniture is done early on, before construction happens, to correctly position lighting in the room.

Technology for those rooms is currently in the works.

 "We are discussing the different technology elements. The current one being discussed is the computer aided dispatch system," said Piper.

This technology would be an upgrade to the current system, but little training would be needed since it is similar to the system used now.

The completion date for the new 911 center building is January 2016.

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