Anoka County leaders helped break ground on a new Emergency Communications Center off Hanson Blvd. in Andover earlier this week.
For more than three decades, 911 calls in Anoka County have been answered by a team working in the basement of the government center. In 1987, they answered about 100,000 calls. Last year, they fielded more than 400,000.
A new, 42,000 square foot building will soon be going up off Hanson Boulevard just north of the Anoka County Sheriff's Office. The new facility will combine 911 dispatchers with the technicians who support thousands of radios and pagers for first responders.
In addition to bigger workstations for dispatchers, the facility will include a large wall of monitors and dedicated training room. There's also an emphasis on employee mental health with a wellness and fitness area along with a quiet room for staff to collect themselves after stressful situations.
Most of the capital for the project comes from American Rescue Plan Act funds. The project is expected to be finished in June 2024.