Chatham County unveils new state-of-the-art emergency operations center

Pittsboro, NC – On October 27, 2023, Chatham County leaders joined Chatham County Emergency Management, Chatham County Emergency Communications, and representatives of Balfour Beatty, Schradergroup Architecture, and MHA Works to celebrate the grand opening of the County’s new Emergency Operations Center (EOC) located on Innovation Way in Pittsboro.

The 37,435-square-foot EOC was designed to be a secure, flexible, and adaptable facility in times of emergency in Chatham County. The facility features administrative and staff spaces including the County’s Emergency Management and Emergency Communications administration, Emergency Operations Center, Emergency Communications operations, training and technology spaces, and common spaces for staff.

Group photo at the grand opening of Chatham County’s new Emergency Operations Center 10.26.23 (photo by Gene Galin)

“Whether we experience a natural or man-made disaster, Chatham County now has a state-of-the-art facility to respond to such emergencies,” said Steve Newton, Emergency Management Director. “The new EOC has the space, technology, and resiliency which will serve our community for decades to come.”

Mike Reitz, Steve Newton and Harry Pettoni (photo by Gene Galin)

While serving the community in times of crisis, the facility also creates a workplace that supports employee health, wellbeing, collaboration, and communication, as these staff perform some of the most stressful work found in local government. Some of the facility’s features include:

  • Additional workstations in the 911 Center that meet immediate and projected future growth needs.
  • Technology and data infrastructure and spaces designed around resilience, flexibility, maintenance, and expansion.
  • Multiple layers of redundancies for critical systems and equipment.
  • Spaces designed around how modern 911 Centers and Emergency Operations Centers operate.
  • Quiet room, fitness room, and other spaces to disconnect from a high stress environment.
  • Multi-use meeting, training, and continuity spaces.
  • Natural lighting in several spaces.

“This is a great day for Chatham County Emergency Operations and the community as a whole,” said Karen Howard, Chatham County Board of Commissioners Chair. “I’m so proud of our commitment to public safety and to these employees who have such critical roles in saving lives – yet they are some of the toughest positions to be in.”

“In times of emergency, residents of Chatham County should feel confident knowing that not only do we have the best people leading us through such crises, but we have a quality facility which will allow us the capability to expand over many decades as Chatham County continues to grow,” said Dan LaMontagne, Chatham County Manager.

Schradergroup Architecture and MHA Works designed the EOC and Balfour Beatty provided construction manager at-risk services.

More information about Chatham County Emergency Management may be found HERE and Chatham County Emergency Communications HERE.