Salt Lake City Public Safety Building Nears Completion
Salt Lake City’s new public safety building is expected to produce as much energy as it uses and bring the city’s Police, Fire, and Emergency Operations Departments closer together. Media donned hard hats and bright orange vests last week to tour the the building, which is slated for completion this June.
Construction activity is vigorous but what’s already apparent is the building will be big and it will be green. When complete it will be the first public safety building in the nation to take on net zero status with the help of energy efficiencies like solar panels and radiant heating in the floors. Deputy Police Chief Tim Doubt says employees will have to do their part as well. Personal items like printers, coffee makers and refrigerators will not be allowed.
“Cops and firefighters are really independent," Doubt says. "They want to have their own stuff, because it’s my stuff and this is my office. That’s a big cultural change.”
Doubt says employees have been giving up personal appliances a little at a time so it won’t come as such a shock.
Another cultural shift for employees will be the ability to work more closely with other departments. Project Manager Chad Jones says right now detectives work on different floors in two separate buildings.
“Two different detectives will be investigating the same thing and never even know it," Jones says. "So they’re going to be collaborating, working much more together. Police and fire also don’t work together right now. They’re on separate floors. They never communicate or coordinate. So they’re going to be working together, side by side, sharing break rooms, sharing conference rooms, sharing those coffee pots, printers, all working together.”
The new public safety building was made possible with the help of a $125 million bond Salt Lake City voters approved in 2009. It’s located on 300 east between 400 and 500 south, which is adjacent to the Salt Lake City Public Library.