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Portland Unveils $20 Million Disaster Response Hub

A new $20 million facility now provides a central hub for Portland’s safety officials to respond to major disasters like earthquakes, floods, and winter storms.

Portland's Emergency Coordination Center.

Portland’s Emergency Coordination Center.

Portland Bureau of Emergency Management

The new Portland Emergency Coordination Center opened today.

The building houses the emergency management offices for the city and its water bureau.

Carmen Merlo,  with the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, says the new setup will benefit the community.

“And the way you do that is to coordinate city assets. We can’t do that if we’re all at separate locations and don’t have appropriate means of communicating,” Merlo says. “So what this building does is allow all those people to be in the same room talking to each other to allocate those scarce resources.”

Merlo says the building project broke ground in June 2012.

The building incorporates advanced information and communication technologies, including a room for social media.