Above is a sneak peak of the first of 4 new Fire Stations, for the City of Downey, nearing completion. WD created each of these unique facilities to serve the dedicated men and women of the Downey Fire Department who strive to deliver the highest quality of service to the expanding needs of their community every day. The thoughtful design of these buildings and their environments represent a great new experience for these first-responders and support staff which will significantly increase the functionality and flexibility of their space, firefighter comfort and parity across stations; along with an enhanced civic presence and identity.

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Orange County Public Works and WD are moving forward on phase two of ‘Bridges at Kraemer Place’ - a comprehensive facility dedicated to transitioning homeless individuals into permanent housing.

On May 5, Orange County’s first year-round emergency shelter and service center, Bridges at Kraemer Place, officially opened in Anaheim. Orange County Public Works engaged Westgroup Designs (WD) in late 2016 to design a facility that fulfills the basic day-to-day needs and provides critical resources for individuals transitioning from homelessness into permanent housing. This opening marks the first phase of the project, providing beds for 100 men and women. Phase two will provide occupancy for an additional 100 residents and include an on-site health clinic, kitchen and computer lab.

WD is providing architecture, planning, and interior design services to renovate an existing industrial concrete tilt-up structure and redesign its 1.87-acre site into a 24,000sf comprehensive facility that serves as a pathway out of homelessness. The design of Bridges at Kraemer Place provides a temporary home for 200 individuals with broad support spaces, including restrooms, showers, lockers, laundry, kitchen, dining hall, computer lab, multi-service conference rooms, in-take and reception area, administration suite, and a complete medical clinic with reception, pharmacy, nurses stations, lab, and three exam rooms.

Most importantly, the facility provides residents with resources to transition out of homelessness, including case management services and daytime services providers. These programs are tailored to individual needs, which could range from reconnecting them with family, to job referrals and shuttle services, to placing the chronically homeless in rent-subsidized permanent housing that includes supportive services.

WD’s design of the Bridges at Kraemer Place will serve homeless individuals from 15 communities in north Orange County. Susan Price, the county’s director of care coordination, states, “This project creates a bridge between the streets and home.”

The Downey Fire Department is a far cry from the department of yesterday. Challenged with providing comprehensive fire and life-safety services to meet increasing service demands from its outdated facilities, the City of Downey has engaged Westgroup Designs to identify current and future needs across their network of four fire stations.

Providing a variety of fire and life-safety services to a community of more than 113,600 residents across 12.5 square miles of Southeast Los Angeles County has taxed the existing facility resources of the Downey Fire Department. In response, The City of Downey has selected Westgroup Designs to provide comprehensive facility condition assessment and master planning services for Fire Stations No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4.

Over its 60-year history, the Downey Fire Department has evolved from an operation that handled 363 fire and rescue calls in its first year to a modern fire department that currently responds to more than 11,000 emergencies annually. And as the Department’s operational model has broadened to encompass an increasing level of service to the community – particularly in the area of emergency medical services – stations built in the ‘60s and ‘70s became out-of-synch with the Department’s expanded mission. Westgroup Designs is in the process of completing facility condition assessments, master planning, and comprehensive programming to assure that each fire station can fully support the Downey Fire Department’s commitment to meeting the challenges of the future while providing state-of-the-art service to the Downey community of today.

San Bernardino County Sheriff Celebrates the Grand Re-Opening of The Frank Bland Regional Training Center

WD’s design doubles the size of facility to enhance the delivery of programs to one of the state's top recognized law enforcement training academies while creating a new civic face to the community.

Students and staff at the Frank Bland Regional Training Center in San Bernardino will return to their training programs in an expanded, modern facility with state-of-the-art digital technology.

The Frank Bland Regional Training Center has provided essential law enforcement training to Sheriff’s Deputies and officers throughout the State since 1973. As a recognized leader in progressive law enforcement training by Peace Officer Standards and Training, or POST, the Training Center graduates an average of 300 students each year between its programs.

View the original article from San Bernardino County.