New Radio Tower to Improve Public Safety Communications in the East Valley

April 24, 2024 at 10:55 am

Public safety and other representatives from the member agencies of the TOPAZ Regional Wireless Cooperative (TRWC) gathered on April 23 for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to dedicate the first new TRWC public safety radio tower in more than 20 years. The new tower, known as H60 (for Highway 60), will improve the coverage area for public safety radios, especially for northeast Mesa, Apache Junction and Queen Creek.

Wireless technology is a critical piece of our regional public safety infrastructure and the TRWC tower will give a much-needed signal boost to emergency crews, said Mayor John Giles. Its great to see so many partners come together to ensure our first responders have the tools they need to do their job.

The City of Mesa, City of Apache Junction, the Towns of Gilbert and Queen Creek and the Superstition Fire and Medical District established the TRWC in 2008 to operate a regional radio system that is modern in its management, has equity in membership and provides for support and future growth. The TRWC has expanded to include Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, Rio Verde Fire, Fountain Hills Fire and American Medical Response (AMR).

As both the population and TRWC grow, the need to expand our radio coverage is critical and the new tower will help meet that need, said Dale Shaw, TRWC Executive Director. I want to thank our team for making this a reality and I look forward to our continued strong regional partnerships.

Interoperability is critical to making TRWC an effective organization and the partners collaborate very well in their goal to make public safety radio communications the best it can be, said Matt Busby, TRWC Board Chair and Apache Junction Assistant City Manager.

All of the partner agencies provide funding for TRWC, with the City of Mesa being the majority stakeholder, providing 65% of it. Staff from Mesas Engineering and Communications Departments were instrumental in the radio towers construction.

The new tower is part of a multi-year improvement expansion plan for the public safety network. The next tower is scheduled to go online later this year in the Tonto National Forest. There are plans to build 13 towers to meet population growth and address public safety needs.