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Renovations totaling about $104,000 are planned for the Streetsboro Police Station's dispatch center.
On Monday, Police Chief Darin Powers presented plans to City Council and said he's hoping for council's approval to move ahead with the project at its April 24 meeting.
"This is a pretty large project we've been looking at for a couple years," said Powers. "Our current dispatch center looks and feels like it's 17 years old."
The current set up includes two consoles where dispatchers sit for eight hours at a stretch using radios, multiple computers and screens, and telephones.
Powers said, particularly on the overnight shift, dispatchers sometimes have sit for long periods without moving if no other dispatcher is scheduled and no officer can monitor the phones and radios.
"They can't get up," he said. "It gets very difficult in these sedentary positions. These new consoles allow them to stand up."
The new consoles also will feature improved lighting and personal climate control, he added.
According to an April 3 memo from Powers to council, the city would buy the furniture, representing a little more than half the project, from Xybix Systems Inc.
The renovation also will include new paint for the walls, new carpet, a new layout of monitors, and upgraded displays, he added.
"We're actually going to move our two dispatch positions to another room temporarily," he said.
Powers said he hopes more comfortable, alert dispatchers will lead to better service for 911 callers.
"If they're feeling better about what they're doing, they're more apt to be more alert, especially toward the end of their shift," he said.
Powers said the new dispatch center will also include a third console, which should help improve service to Streetsboro police and fire and Windham police, which the center also serves.
"Our hope is that we can provide a little better service once we put new equipment in there," he said. "During periods where we're busy, they won't have to wait as long for that call to be answered."
He said there are no immediate plans to add more agencies to the center's dispatching responsibilities.
According to an April 3 memo from Powers to Council, the department's video recording systems also will be upgraded.
"We currently have 16 cameras around the building that are monitored and recorded at dispatch," he said. "Those cameras are monitored on four older small monitors hanging on the wall. We would like to replace these monitors with two larger 55-inch monitors that show multiple inputs on one screen."
The upgrade also would include purchasing two digital video recorders that would record all 16 video feeds, states the memo. The current DVR records four cameras.