Cloward H2O, an expert in aquatic design, has been engaged to design and engineer Houston Community College’s Regional Response Operations Center (RROC), alongside S2o Design, Huitt Zollars, and local civil, structural and MEP firms.
Floods are a frequent danger along the gulf coast of South Texas to Florida, and Houston Community College has a long history of training first responders to help with this hazard. Now, in a bid to improve the emergency response in the region, it will expand its existing first responders training facility by creating the RROC.
The expansion project will result in the college being able to offer dedicated training for three to four thousand public and private fire, law enforcement, emergency medical and rescue responders each year, giving them the technical skills necessary to perform urban flood and swift water rescues.
Regional Response Operations Center
The facilities will enable trainees to practice aerial and boat rescues both day and night, experiencing real-life disaster scenarios under controlled conditions.
The design includes a 2.5-acre flatwater pond, variable configuration swift water channel, as well as an urban flood simulator with mock-up buildings and a low head dam simulation. Here, trainees will have the opportunity to use real-world rescue vehicles in a range of scenarios.
The design also features re-configurable obstacles and movable equipment, so there will be complete flexibility to sculpt the swift water channel into a wide range of rescue training scenarios as well as the ability to vary the hydraulic conditions dynamically.
“Cloward H2O takes on the various engineering challenges presented in this project with an imaginative and perceptive approach,” said a spokesperson for the company. “Our role is key to the integration of mechanical and structural systems enabling flexible configuration for a wide variety of realistic but controlled hydraulic conditions and simulations throughout the facility.
“Water quality management is also of paramount importance and is particularly challenging, requiring specific attention to high levels of potential contamination from the boats, trucks, and rescue gear being utilized. Cloward H2O is honoured to work with the HCC administration, design team and regional responders to achieve this monumental goal and improve the capabilities of responders throughout the region.”
Last month, Cloward H2O celebrated the opening of Conrad Punta de Mita Hotel in Mexico. The company provided its design expertise for all the pool amenities at the new hotel.