After planning the creation of a regional storm response center at one of their satellite facilities, ComEd moved to master planning and designing the improvements at their primary Operation Command Center (OCC). The facility condition and space needs assessments identified shortcomings of the existing building for its intended use, which included insufficient security, structural hardening, and lack of program space for emergency preparedness and response personnel.
The additions and renovations address these concerns. A 4,000 sf addition of a storm shelter ensures protection of the ComEd staff as well as continuity of operations in the event of up to an EF-4 tornado. In normal operating conditions, the addition acts as large-group meeting space and includes and operable wall to accommodate small meetings. Meanwhile, upgrades to their dispatch arena include new furniture systems that achieve a layout to accommodate four regions, new AV displays, and LED lighting. Two break-out rooms allow employee review meetings and an elevated platform provides shift managers access over dispatch stations.
Implemented additions and renovations at ComEd did not interrupt existing operations and considered the prevalence of strong storms between May and August for construction scheduling.