Brevard County gives public tour of building housing new emergency operations center

Brevard County's emergency management director says their operations center is the most activated in Florida. Saturday, the public got a chance to tour the county’s brand-new emergency operations headquarters in Rockledge.

"We live close by, so we basically watched this building go up brick by brick, or cinder block by cinder block," said resident James Kelly, "this is unbelievable, it really is. Not that anybody wants an emergency, but if there is one, Rockledge is ready."

Not just Rockledge – but all of Brevard County. The new facility boasts 54,000 square feet of the latest in emergency operations technology and know-how. The building houses the new emergency dispatch center, a commercial kitchen, five conference rooms, two training/bunk rooms, and a media briefing room.

At its heart, is the EOC operations floor, with more than 150 chairs and table space. "We bring all of our partners, not just from a county level, but our municipal partners, our state and federal partners, all working as one unit to solve problems as they come in and make sure we're providing the kind of services our residents are expecting during emergencies," said Brevard Emergency Management Director John Scott.

The building is also fortified to withstand category-five hurricane-strength winds. Compared to the previous operations center, people who will be working in this building said the bigger, brighter space would be a welcome change. "I love it, it's amazing. It's a big difference from the bunker we've been in for, I've been on ESF-5 the last six or seven years, so this is a very big difference," said Misty Shirah, an EOC coordinator, "it's very exciting."