911 Call Center Move Considered By Council

Old one might not withstand an earthquake

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - An earthquake could crush Santa Barbara's 911 call center. That's why the Santa Barbara City Council discussed moving it during a work session Monday. The current call center on the bottom of the police station was built half a century ago, when operators used switchboards. It does not meet seismic safety standards.

Since the city can't afford to build a new station right now, the police department would like to move the 911 call center temporarily to the Granada Garage office building. The move, about a block away, would cost about $2 million in moving, construction and equipment expenses. It would be paid for with redevelopment agency funds the city fought the state to keep.

If the City Council approves the move on Tuesday, a new call center could be up and running by late summer.

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