Barber County, KS – Public Safety Building

Barber County Annex

Location: Medicine Lodge, Kansas
Year Completed: 2016
Size: 11,924 SF
Awards and Publications: Design Cost Data Magazine – September/October 2016 Edition

Barber County selected HMN to design their new public safety building because of our experience in both healthcare and justice sectors. HMN worked closely with the commission, the public health and emergency management director, and the county clerk to achieve a design that met their budget and goals.

The design team worked to create a building complimented with the 1954 courthouse across the street and still fit in with the adjacent residential area in terms of scale and massing. One of the design criteria HMN was given was to create a design that didn’t have a flat or low sloped roof.

The new facility has one public entrance that is ADA compliant with automatic door openers. There is also a wheelchair friendly sidewalk path from the parking lot to the entrance. The staff has two entrances that use proximity reader cards to record and control their use.

The building has a large 3,450 SF area that will function as a training space. During elections, that same space will be used as the polling area. If the county was hurt by a pandemic or natural disaster, the space would function as an emergency operations center (EOC).

We used pre-cast and poured in place concrete for the walls and a hollow-core panel structural ceiling (lid) to make this space a safe location. It is tucked into the heavily sloped site to help protect its west side and diminish the buildings profile. The concrete hollow core lid also gave the engineer the opportunity to locate the mechanical systems in the attic area created by the previously mentioned roof design.

The EOC has storage and office space as well as an information technology area that is a new secure hub for the county’s important electronics. There is also an equipment storage room to be used by the election officers and for general storage needs. A warming kitchen is available for county training, seminar sessions or in the event of a crisis.

The public health wing is separated from the EOC by the lobby. The new department has a separate waiting room that is visually controlled by the reception desk and separated from the staff work areas. This allows the children to use the play area without as much noise in the departments work space. The design for the public health wing is based on a central nursing station that allows the staff easy access to the exam rooms, education spaces and administrative offices.



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