Houston Emergency Center


City of Houston


Size: 128,000 SF

Architect: PGAL

Feature: three facilities in one

Houston Emergency Center


City of Houston’s 911 dispatch responds to 3.6 million police, fire, and medical emergency calls yearly. Due to the critical importance of accurate, speedy communications in emergency situations, city officials consolidated these services from three separate facilities into one to improve communications coordination and information management systems. The building systems have 24/7 redundancy, a situation room with state-of-the-art technology, auditorium/press room, and administration/operations/dispatch.

Careful consideration was given to the design of the facility, the call center is located above the computer room for optimal access to cabling enabling equipment maintenance without disrupting operations. Noise control was an important consideration and was addressed through workstation configuration and acoustical buffers, and given the long hours dispatchers work in stressful situations, the use of natural light was essential. The structure was designed and hardened for hurricane winds up to 150mph.