Update: Headline edited for poor grammar. – KtE
The new radio system for Polk County 911 dispatchers to use to communicate clearly with first responders out in the field is in the midst of going up, and the upgrade to the new P-25 mission critical public safety communications system that is set to go online this year.
On Thursday, May 13 and Friday, May 14, sections of the radio tower were stacked and put up on property in Taylorsville being used by the county to relay the system to all points of Polk, and made connections further on in Bartow and Cobb to the central hub of the digital system being hosted by Cobb County.
County Commissioner Ray Carter said in recent days that towers have also been under construction in Rockmart and another is set to go up in coming days in Esom Hill as well.
This would give the county at least four towers worth of communication – including one already in place in Cedartown – with a fifth still being figured out for the area of Rocky Hollow and Jackson Chapel.
As the towers go up, Commissioner Carter feels confident that all is so far running smoothly for the promised mid-year switch on for the new system.
“We remain on a good target schedule for our summer deployment of the Polk County P-25 system,” Carter said.
Polk County’s new radio system – being built and installed by Motorola after the contract was negotiated and approved by the county over the course of several months in 2019 – brings with it new handheld radios, towers, the equipment to run the system and links to Bartow and Cobb counties to connect with the Cobb County system as a regional backbone.
Late last year, officials traveled to Illinois to complete a full-scale test of the system’s equipment at Motorola’s facility near Chicago, and with that completed allowed for build out of the new system.
New equipment will still have to be hooked up to all the towers, installed in the 911 operations center at the Polk County Emergency Management Agency, and radios provided to first responders and placed in their vehicles.
New capabilities with the radio system will provide various means of connecting officers in the field with information at 911 operations centers, as well as provide a regional connection through the hub in Cobb County.
It does come at a big cost of more than $8 million by the time the equipment, towers, land to place them on and maintenance agreements are applied.
Tower sites include Rocky Hollow, Taylorsville, Esom Hill, Rockmart and Cedartown that are known at this time.
Check back for future updates about the system upgrade as they become available.