SERA worked with KPFF Engineers to upgrade the seismic resilience of Washington County’s Law Enforcement Center (LEC), which was originally constructed in 1998. Containing the sheriff’s office, a courtroom and other public services, LEC will play a critical role in Washington County’s response to a major seismic event and the County secured $1.5 million in state grant funds for seismic upgrades to critical facilities.
The original solution proposed by the prior architectural team suggested wrapping 144 interior columns in carbon-fiber. This would increase demolition, prolong the project schedule, and disrupt the facility operations. SERA’s team devised an alternative strategy using external braces that match the color and material of the original building. This less-invasive solution significantly reduced project costs, improved seismic performance, and minimized demolition and impact to facility operations — critical as the LEC houses police services that must be operational 24/7/365.
The project was completed on time and under budget, demonstrating a responsible use of public funds.