Communication Center Earns Cooperation Award
Hendricks County government units recently honored by The Indiana Association of Cities and Towns (IACT) with its Local Government Cooperation Award. The award, presented recently at the 31st IACT Annual Awards program, recognizes extraordinary innovation and the cooperation between Plainfield, Avon, Brownsburg, Danville and Hendricks County in establishing the Hendricks County Communication Center (HCCC).
The Center, which consolidates four dispatching units into one location, is housed in the Plainfield Police Headquarters building. It began serving Plainfield residents in July and all Hendricks County residents in September. The facility streamlines and standardizes county-wide communication between dispatchers and local public safety agencies including police, fire and ambulance services. According to HCCC Executive Director Larry Brinker, before the Center began full operations, “calls to the wrong responding agency required forwarding and repeating information. Now, with our centralized emergency reporting, all responding agencies are on the same 800 MHz radio communication system. Plainfield Town Council President Robin Brandgard adds that the system “allows the Center to quickly dispatch the closest emergency responder to the scene, cutting response time and reducing overall work load.
The state-of-the-art equipment necessary to operate the Center cost approximately $7.6 million, but Brinker notes that this is significantly less than the $12 million indicated by early research for a non-centralized solution. “By combining resources, he says, “we were able to do more with the money available and improve individual response and overall efficiency in the process.
Brandgard says the Center, which resulted from several years' planning and the adoption of a unique Interlocal Agreement between the four participating communities, is probably the first of its kind in the state. “The IACT award recognizes our cooperative spirit, he says, “as well as the significant effort it took to bring several local governments together for the good of everyone in the county.
More Trails Ready for Autumn Strolls
As part of an overall plan to expand Plainfield's trail system, two key pieces areset to enhance recreation among the Fall foliage. Work on the Lincoln Street Trail has been completed, extending the trail east from Franklin Park along Lincoln Street, crossing Mill, Center, Vine and East streets. The Vandalia East Trail will soon be completed, extending from East Street north past Bob Ward Park to the former Vandalia Railroad right-of-way where it will proceed east to Dan Jones Road.
For the Lincoln Street Trail, Calumet Contractors installed large pipes to enclose the drainage ditch between Mill and East streets. In addition, old abutments along Lincoln Street were removed and the intersecting streets repaved. The pedestrian trail was installed on top of the former ditch. Funding for this project came, in part, from a national watershed protection grant program administered by the State.
JDH Contractors is nearing completion of its current work phase on the Vandalia East Trail project. In 2008 this trail will be extended to the east from Dan Jones Road to Township Line Road where it will connect with existing sidewalks.
In all, the Comprehensive Greenway Master Plan calls for completing approximately 5.1 miles of trailways in the next couple of years, according to Plainfield Parks Director Clay Chafin. “When completed, he says, “the new trails will connect several hundred homes to the trail system and enable residents from one area of town to conveniently travel to other areas, including town parks, without ever having to get in a car or cross U.S. 40 or S.R. 267.
For more information about the new trails or the overall greenway plan, visit www.townofplainfield.com and click on Greenways; or call the Parks and Recreation Department at 839-7665. Residents can also pick up a map of the greenway system at the Recreation Center at 651 Vestal Road.