GREENWOOD — A new facility in Center Grove is being called a game changer with a goal of keeping students and the community safe.
The Center Grove Emergency Operations Center provides a centralized place for Center Grove Police, a full-service fire station shared by Bargersville and White River Township Fire Departments and a satellite office for the Johnson County Sheriff's Office.
"We're always stronger working together. They say two heads are better than one and we're putting four to five different agencies together in one building. Think of how awesome that's going to be and all that we can do," Bargersville Fire Chief Eric Funkhouser said. "Today is one of the most exciting days of my career."
The Center Grove Emergency Operations Center, located at 2309 S Morgantown Road, is less than a half mile from some Center Grove schools. Officials say the location will improve response times - particularly at schools.
Assistant superintendent Bill Long says the idea came after a 2018 security assessment when the district was told it needed to improve response times and live monitoring.
Now, one person from Center Grove Police is dedicated to live monitoring about 700 cameras.
"One of the things that probably keeps all school administrators awake at night is 'are we doing enough to protect our kids?' This station gives us something that not only does it protect our students and our staff, but it helps better protect our whole community," Long said.
The project and facility is one of only a few in the country. Training continues for the police department.
"We have this great facility, now we have to master it," Center Grove Police Chief Ray Jackson said.
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