Four ways public safety projects help transform communities

Overland Park Fire Station #48, a McCownGordon Construction project

Everyone wants to live in a community they can be proud of. Pride begins with investing in public safety projects. Today’s construction market requires creative preplanning to meet your goals and early exploration to maximize taxpayer dollars.

According to FMI, public safety construction in the Midwest is expected to see an upward growth over the several years. McCownGordon is proud to be the region’s civic and public safety construction manager, successfully completing over 90 facilities.

Here are four ways public safety projects help transform communities:

Promotes Partnership

Constructing a new or renovating an existing public safety facility is a big deal to the community’s citizens. As you navigate this process, leveraging unique ways to maximize partnership and trust within the community is important. A simple yet effective way to build excitement with staff and the community is offering guided jobsite tours or providing monitors in the existing breakrooms showing real-time project progress during construction. Another opportunity could be a strategic partnership focused on supporting education. Adjacent to the Blue Valley Southwest High School campus, the Overland Park Fire Station #48 plays an integral role in a new fire science program. Students benefit from the district’s curriculum by receiving hands-on learning and training experience, allowing them to start building a future career.

Increased Safety

Seconds matter when responding to an emergency call. Getting emergency personnel out the door and on their way as quickly as possible is first and foremost in public safety. A crucial role every public safety facility has is ensuring proper coverage and rapid response time. For example, we help evaluate apparatus bay exit door options such as overhead doors versus four-fold doors.

Safety is a huge factor for all individuals inside a police station. Security systems such as PTZ cameras, biometrics scanners and key card access systems throughout the facility are crucial, especially in spaces where officers will be transporting detainees. A focus on public and secure corridors is essential to properly maintain safety for staff and visitors.

Recruitment & Retention

People and staffing are more important now than ever before. There are many factors that drive successful recruitment and retention including overall health and wellbeing, training opportunities, flexibility, comfortability within the space and security. While public safety facilities need to be function-driven buildings that meet demand, the facilities also need to function as a second home for firefighters and paramedics, and a secure environment for police officers. A calming, comfortable space is important and can help reduce occupational stress such as adequate daylight for work areas and space for both indoor/outdoor gym and recreational activities.


Following modern standards on contamination control measures and leveraging our expertise of clean/dirty separation will prevent cross-contamination from apparatus bays to living and sleeping quarters, reducing the risk of cancer and infectious disease to firefighters. It’s vital that police officers are provided with quality training programs such as a state-of-the-art firing range or a virtual training stimulator to help better prepare them for the real-world situations they face.


Improved Efficiency & Functionality

Mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems and equipment are key drivers for a project. Simply put, they will need to support the critical functions, reduce long-term maintenance costs and promote health and safety. MEP systems can account for more than 30-40% of a project’s budget and are the backbone for reliability and functionality.

McCownGordon’s Building Performance Solutions team of licensed engineers allows us to maximize value at the early stages of the project by evaluating life-cycle costs between various equipment types and envelope systems. Working closely with the design team, they will review drawings looking for constructability concerns and cost options that might be more cost-effective or easier to install and maintain. At the end of the day, we want to make sure you pay the right price for the right-sized systems. As an owner, you’ll have a higher level of confidence your building meets your expectations.

Civic and public safety facilities are the foundation of a community. Click here to view related projects. Contact us to learn how we can help with your upcoming public safety project.