To Protect and Serve...Drive to Survive!

To Protect and Serve...Drive to Survive!
Train as if your life depended on it! It does!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Site Visit

Today the JPA's NTC Project Workgroup met at NTC to view the site.  The purpose of this visit was to give members of the workgroup an up close and personal view of the conditions currently present at the location.  The group walked through several areas, including Buildings 479, 480 and 557.  They viewed the cache of rescue equipment and supplies at the Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) warehouse in 557 and looked at the structural design of the building.  The design plans target 479, 480 and a major portion of 557 (sans the warehouse) for future demolition to make way for the EVOC driver training track and EVOC admin and classroom building. 

The discussions amongst the group included concerns about keeping USAR on site in the warehouse facility only, moving them off-site to an alternate location, bringing in portable classrooms from City College and limited funding to completely build out EVOC to meet the training needs of the JPA members.  In addition, a new traffic study will have to be completed soon as our project scope and design have changed substantially from earlier, City approved conceptual plans.  Like any project, it wouldn't be fun if there weren't some challenges along the way.

The workgroup also viewed areas affected by new construction by AT&T contractors (new fiber optics lines), MCRD's plan for the General's Gate Road and airport expansion construction adjacent to our site along McCain Road.  The Airport Authority's contractor recently completed work on the new intersection at McCain Road and N. Harbor Drive where you will find a new traffic signal controlling the intersection.  More roadway improvements are slated for McCain Road in the next year or two.

As the tough questions are asked and answered, we will be able to give everyone a more definitive timeline on the project.  Right now, we need to dig even deeper into some key issues regarding this location.  The movement of the college's Fire EMT Program back to Miramar College, the challenges involving the USAR warehouse, the need to move non-JPA member agencies off-site to make way for PSTI training enterprises and the need to establish new procedures for PSTI operations on site make for busy work days.

As you can probably imagine, with such a wide variety of agencies and entities involved and/or affected by this project, it requires a high level of diplomacy, patience, perseverance and problem-solving skills.  I am personally very thankful for the talented workgroup we have assembled for this major project.  Without their commitment, we would not have made it this far - remember, we started this in earnest just a few months ago in mid-February.

In the weeks to come, the JPA Workgroup will meet with Airport Authority and MCRD staff to work out improvements on McCain Road along with development and construction of the General's Gate Road.  We will also work with City staff and Homeland Security on the AT&T MPOE Project that supports PSTI, DHS and airport communications/IT needs, providing easements and/or right of way permits as appropriate.  In addition, the college district's construction management team will begin work on a new traffic study to determine how our new EVOC project design and street closures will effect our neighbors.  We will meet with USAR staff to determine the complexity of Building 557's demolition, collaborate on site issues and evaluate the usefulness of portable classrooms at City College for possible relocation and use at the EVOC Facility.

Much work lies ahead for us...stayed tuned.