EVIDENCE STORAGE FOR A
RAPIDLY GROWING CITY
Case Study - Calgary, Alberta
A Better Long-term Solution
Calgary is the fastest growing city in Canada and is home to over a million residents. While population growth can be positive in many ways, it also has a downside: cities with more people tend to experience more crime, and rapid growth can strain public services.
This was the case with the Calgary Police Service, which was struggling with storage issues as more evidence accumulated. The service eventually rented a warehouse to hold property and evidence, and although the warehouse was accredited, it was relatively distant from police headquarters. Over time the rent and the costs associated with driving to and from the warehouse added up to a significant expense.
In 2013 department leadership decided it was time to start looking for a more appropriate and cost-effective long-term solution for evidence storage.
A team consisting of personnel from property and evidence, finance, and infrastructure services began researching options for a new warehouse that was suited to their specific needs and that could accommodate future growth. They decided that a vacant lot adjacent to police headquarters would provide the ideal opportunity to create a centralized, purpose-built facility for property and evidence storage.
The lot had significant space restrictions, and the planning team was concerned that a traditional storage system built within the site’s footprint would not have enough capacity to accommodate future growth. That’s when the infrastructure services team
introduced the group to the concept of Spacesaver’s ActivRAC® Mobilized Storage System and XTend® Mobile High-Bay Storage System. These solutions would allow them to use the vertical space in the warehouse and compact aisles to maximize capacity.
Two space-saving solutions
The Calgary Police Service chose two different Spacesaver systems to make the most efficient use of limited space.
ActivRAC® Mobilized Storage System
XTend® High-Bay Storage System
Ideal for large and/or heavy items, the heavy-duty ActivRAC system maximizes space in industrial settings and is also used in evidence warehouses. The system eliminates wasted aisle space by mounting pallet racking on a carriage-and-rail system. The aisles open at the point of need and are wide enough to allow forklifts to operate.
The XTend system, available in stationary (non-moving) or mobile (rail-mounted) applications, makes the most efficient use of vertical space. This system is best suited for storing standard box sizes.
In order to learn more about the systems’ capacity, design, and operation, the team called in the local Spacesaver consultant. He listened carefully to their concerns and helped design a layout that would not only make the most effective use of the available space, but that would also help the department maintain its accreditation.
ActivRAC eliminates wasted
ActivRAC eliminates wasted aisle space by mounting
pallet racking on a carriage-and-rail system. The rows
of racking sit side-by-side until evidence warehouse
staff open an aisle to store or retrieve evidence. Ideal
for evidence that is large and/or heavy, the most
robust version of ActivRAC can bear loads of up
to 30,000 pounds per carriage section.
XTend Mobile System
Staff Use Lifts
Badge-swipe access provides an additional layer of security to specified aisles that store evidentiary weapons. This added security is required to maintain accreditation.
Evidence in standard boxes is stored on an XTend® Mobile High-Bay Storage System.
The XTend system moves along rails and extends toward the ceiling to make the most efficient use of both horizontal and vertical space.
Evidence warehouse staff use lifts to gain access to the upper reaches of the XTend system. Spacesaver can advise on selecting lifts and in planning for lift charging stations and other space concerns.
An Enduring Solution
The new warehouse opened in 2017. It has a variety of space-saving features that improve organization and ensure a secure chain of custody. In addition, because the stored evidence takes up less space, the department was able to design and build a smaller building than they had originally thought was necessary. This resulted in lower construction costs as well as lower ongoing operating costs, particularly those associated with heating and cooling.
The group brought in the local Spacesaver consultant early in the design process. He helped them assess their storage needs and think about future considerations. He also partnered with Spacesaver’s headquarters in Wisconsin, USA, to advise the architect on load-bearing concerns, the size of the system, floor rail placement, and other considerations, and his input was invaluable as the architect drew up the plans.
This project exemplifies Spacesaver’s approach to working with law enforcement agencies. Our network of local space consultants routinely work with departments of all sizes to thoughtfully design, install, and maintain efficient storage solutions. Their local expertise is backed up by our Wisconsin-based teams of in-house engineers, project managers, and
manufacturing craftspeople who help design and build systems that will stand the test of time. Contact us early in the planning stages to take advantage of our knowledge and expertise.