Murfreesboro, Tennessee, is a thriving metropolis located 40 miles outside of Nashville. Since the 2010 census, the city has seen its population increase by 50%. Aggressive population growth on that scale requires an equally aggressive approach to expanding government services, like law enforcement and firefighting. The civic leaders of Murfreesboro were ahead of the curve and started planning for growth even before it had landed. The previous police headquarters was built in 1973 and over the past few decades, several generations of civic leaders have acknowledged that a serious upgrade will be needed sooner than later. To put things in perspective, the city’s population has grown from 30,000 to more than 141,000 since 1973.
To keep pace with this growth, the city got the ball rolling on a new headquarters in December of 2013 with a commitment to purchase a vacant clinic. Centrally located with room to grow, the building’s location was perfect. Plans were initiated for a state-of-the-art police headquarters and ground was officially broken in the summer of 2016. The new headquarters needed to be a source of civic pride aesthetically as well as provide the local law enforcement with a functional and secure home. Because the new headquarters project included a plan for robust security features and fiber optic lines, the decision was made to have the building also serve as a hub for the city’s information technology department. “The building was going to be one of the most secure in Murfreesboro, so it made sense to use it to house a large portion of the city’s IT,” Mayor Shane McFarland explained.
When designing the new facility, it was important to all parties involved that the structure feel welcoming, “… not like some kind of impenetrable fortress,” McFarland added. A glass, two-story atrium and lobby gives the structure a stunning architectural feature that few would associate with a police headquarters. Ironically, that glazing feature provides a level of ballistic and blast resistance typically reserved for diplomatic buildings in politically unstable regions.
“Most people have no idea what kind of blast and ballistic protection is built into those products… and that was exactly how we planned it.”
—Barry White, Norshield COO
“The glazing contractor decided to install our NS7000 line of aluminum security windows and doors on the project,” said Barry White, Norshield’s executive vice president and COO. “When you look at the NS7000 products, what you see are sleek and conventional-looking windows and doors. Most people have no idea what kind of blast and ballistic protection is built into those products… and that was exactly how we planned it.”
In addition to sleek looks and formidable security performance, the NS7000 line delivers strong thermal qualities. Proprietary thermal breaks disrupt the travel of cold and heat and contribute to an R-value as high as R-12, depending on the thickness of the glass itself (the NS7000 can accommodate glazing up to 2 ½ inches thick). As unassuming as the NS7000 is visually, it boasts a long list of security performance attributes: blast resistance up to 14 psi, forced entry-rated to ASTM F1233 Class 3, and ballistic resistance rated to UL752 level 9. “It’s as serious as a window and door can get, without compromising looks in the slightest,” added White.
Nearly a decade ago, the city leaders of Murfreesboro made the decision to invest in the city’s infrastructure and its future. The result is a facility with astonishing curb appeal, as well as the ability to serve and protect the nearly 270 peace officers that perform the city’s business inside.
Bell & Associates Construction
McClaren Wilson & Lawrie