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Parks upgrading security at all facilities

Security is being upgraded at all Dickinson Parks & Recreation facilities. A contract with Schutz Foss Architects of Billings, Montana, designers of the Veterans Pavilion, is being expanded to include designs for security for all Dickinson Pa...

Security is being upgraded at all Dickinson Parks & Recreation facilities.

A contract with Schutz Foss Architects of Billings, Montana, designers of the Veterans Pavilion, is being expanded to include designs for security for all Dickinson Parks buildings.

"This is an agreement with the architect to take it to the next level," James Kramer, parks director, said at a Park Board roundtable session Friday.

The facilities being upgraded include the community center and ice center, golf pro shop and cart storage area, Veterans Pavilion, skate park and outdoor waterpark, and all of their parking lots.

"We walked through several facilities," Matt Mack, facility operations manager, said, "identified the areas where we thought would potentially need video cameras, and he came back with this agreement."

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The architect's estimate for the project is $126,000.

"Basically that money would come from the city assistance program we have with them from last year," Mack said. "That's not affecting that will come out of this year."

This number could change, Mack cautioned.

"It might not be that much. It might be less," he said. "As we go along and get estimates from people that are interested in this project we may cut some things out."

The cost for the designs is $11,970, Mack said, plus reimbursable expenses not to exceed $1,260.

"It's for him to design all of this for us so we can go out to bid and get the equipment and have it installed," Mack explained.

Finding a specialist was a challenge, Kramer said.

"He has a lot of experience with prisons and police departments and construction, so he had a connection to a security design system specialist," he said. "It started when we started to do the pavillion individually, and it just grew into our facilities and he was extremely helpful. He has specific people on staff to do the security system."

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The upgrade is not a response to any specific event, Kramer explained.

"At all of our facilities there's random acts that happen that we sometimes look in the mirror and say, boy it would've been nice if we had cameras," he said. "It's just been, over the years, the evolution of how our facilities operate, and we think this is a step in the right direction to help us be more safe."

An upgraded security system has long been needed, Kramer said.

"We've been reviewing and researching several years and we think it's the right time," he said. "There's a balancing act to how much and where because it does, on the front end, get very costly, and on the back end, there's a lot to manage with the system."

He added, "It's the right thing to do to provide the safest environment we can at our facilities for our users."

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