Bay County will build a new Emergency Operations Center warehouse to store materials and supplies for use in natural disasters. The $729,600 contract will be funded by a Community Development Block Grant.
The EOC warehouse will be built on property at the Majette Yard, where other county operations – including Mosquito Control, Roads and Bridges, and Traffic Signals and Signs – are located.
According to Mark Bowen, Chief of Emergency Operations, the 10,920 square foot warehouse will be used to stockpile bottled water, non-perishable food, medications and beds. "Probably the largest area of the warehouse will be dedicated for our special needs shelter," he said.
Chief Bowen said construction of the new building is expected to save money for the health department – which now pays to store supplies – and free up storage space at the school district. "The school district is storing a hundred hospital beds for us right now… so those are things that we can move to this place at Majette," said Bowen.
Design specifications call for the building to be constructed of heavy gauge steel and be able to withstand Category 4 winds of 160 miles per hour. The design includes a loading dock and parking area with electrical hook-up for a refrigerated truck or mobile command post.
According to George Walrond, Engineering Division Manager, energy costs will be minimal. "This is going to be an Energy Star rated building," said Walrond. "It's going to have a large solar array on the roof that's going to provide about two thirds of the energy."
Local firms are heading up design and construction: The Associates Architects and Kolmetz Construction. Walrond said construction is scheduled to begin October 1, with occupancy in March 2013.