City Looks To Expand 911 Services

Grand Junction's Police Department and communications center is growing in stride with a population surge and the needs for an upgraded facility are growing as well.

The police department's current facility was built in the late 1950's, the communications center was formed in 1979 and on Monday night city council members were briefed on how to expand services in the existing facility, while planning for a brand new operations center.

The briefing to city council looked to accomplish two goals; planning for providing immediate space needs, while also planning for a new public safety building in the future.

A new building is several years and millions of dollars away so the outline of the plan also has a scope of at least four years.

Personnel wise, an additional two trailers will be brought on site to house the swelling department but at the forefront of the plan is the communications center, which is in need of power back up replacements and technological upgrades.

Because the volume of calls has at least tripled since 2000, three additional dispatch consoles will also be installed.

But with the center handling communications to 18 fire, police and emergency service providers, the trick will be to not interrupt service that in some cases mean the difference between life and death.

It's still up in the air if the new police facility will be built in its current location and no decisions on what direction to make were made Monday, but it's projected the city will share about 15 percent of the total costs.