Global architecture practice, GHDWoodhead collaborated with GHD’s specialist security services team to design the new $52.8-million Bob Atkinson Operational Capabilities Centre (BAOCC) for Queensland Police Service (QPS) in Wacol, Queensland.

BAOCC is a multifunctional and tactical police training centre built to support the training of more than 7500 in-service officers and specialist units, including 600 QPS recruits each year. Both state and national emergency service and defence agencies can participate in joint exercises, helping support greater cooperation between various agencies.

Feature highlights of the new training centre include two indoor firearms ranges, an expansive unique scenario village and other specialist training areas, all designed to enhance the capabilities of police officers in managing terrorism and other critical incidents.

An initial Training Needs Analysis conducted by GHDWoodhead along with GHD’s Global Security Training Area and Ranges team, informed the design of the training facility, indoor firing ranges and the scenario village. They also participated in the ballistic testing of all the materials and systems to be used in the ranges to confirm the suitability of the selected materials in the reference design.

Additionally, GHDWoodhead and GHD provided advisory services to the client, the Department of Housing and Public Works, throughout the development of the facility.

“The village has been designed with careful consideration to provide realistic training environments and prepare officers for all situations on the field and includes a replica service station, houses and office spaces,” says Bruce Clark, director of architecture – Queensland GHDWoodhead. 

“GHD’s Security Training Area and Ranges team has delivered a number of security training facilities in Australia and internationally over the past decade, so having this experience and knowledge helped us drive further innovation and the achievement of a world-class training facility for QPS.

“The unexpected spread of COVID-19 is an example of what Australia may face into the future. And we look to our police force to keep people safe and the BAOCC will help prepare members of the force as best as possible for these unprecedented events,” adds Clark.

“The support shown from the GHD team on this project has been exceptional. The team have been engaging and provided support at critical times to ensure the QPS obtains the very best outcome for the QLD Government,” Rhys Wildman, superintendent, QPS, said. 

“Through the value management process in the design phase, the team’s input was vital in working through some of the budgetary challenges, whilst still maintaining the focus on delivering the Counter Terrorism and Community Safe Centre as a world-class facility,” he added.

The centre has been named in honour of long-serving former Queensland Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson.