City of Aurora Public Safety Training Center
Aurora, Colo.
Best Project

Owner City of Aurora
Lead Design studiotrope
BCD Architect Barker Rinker Seacat Architecture
BCD Planning Architect RDG Planning & Design
Civil Engineer Martin/Martin Consulting Engineers
Structural Engineer ELA Engineers
General Contractor Adolfson & Peterson Construction

Normally, a building on fire is a bad thing. But for the city of Aurora’s new Public Safety Training Center (CAPSTC), the project team built structures that can intentionally be set on fire. The innovative training campus simulates real-life scenarios for the police, public works and fire departments.

CAPSTC consisted of seven different projects that were designed, built and integrated together in a short time frame: 23 acres of extensive sitework and converting a former bomb testing area; building nearly two miles of a force-main system to tie sewage into a water treatment facility, which included boring through wetlands; constructing a 43,366-sq-ft education and training building designed with flexibility to meet the needs of multiple stakeholders; a 7,000-sq-ft, five-story drill tower structure; a 3,500-sq-ft class-A burn building; an onsite pump house and sustainable water system to recycle the water used in fire training; and 4.2 acres of 7-in. concrete paving for an emergency-vehicle operations course.

The project incorporated nontraditional elements such as grooved concrete for ladder training, propane-fed steel fire props that mimic furniture on fire, “dirty” classrooms for gun training and large walls designed for rappelling.

The project site was formerly part of an Army Corps of Engineers bomb-testing area. Excavation removed nearly 40,000 cu yd of soil, which required testing to clean it of ammunitions and military remnants.

Adolfson & Peterson removed old ammunition cases, a number of unknown materials and a 2,500-lb inert bomb. A 4-ft-thick concrete detonation bunker that could not be removed was included into the project plan and used for storage.

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