West Valley City • The city will spend $90,000 to upgrade the bomb and metal detector security system at the publicly owned Maverik Center.
The move comes after a unanimous vote by the West Valley City Council on Tuesday evening.
The money will buy 16 new detectors at $4,600 a copy plus additional equipment.
City officials said the upgrade is standard and was not triggered by specific safety threats.
“Already, there are many security measures in the Maverik Center, and in venues, when things become available and the timing is right, we say, ‘Well, let’s take the next step,’” Mayor Ron Bigelow said. “That’s all it is — routine.”
The new software, called elliptic metal detector, allows Maverik Center patrons to move through security lines at a more efficient pace while also increasing bomb and gun detection. Patrons will also be able to see through and past the detectors.
“It just helps us with consistency and efficiency in the screening process,” said Kevin Bruder, general manager of the multipurpose arena located in West Valley City. “The technology is there just to help the speed. It will make it much more efficient.”
Wayne Pyle, city manager, said the technology is “cheaper than it used to be,” which is partly why the city council recently began considering the new software.
“There’s an increasing demand from the safety and security standpoint from customers themselves,” Pyle said. “It’s easier to institute those changes which are in more demand.”
Before entering the venue, patrons will walk through a body scanner similar to those used in airports, and the scanner will detect metallic substances and alert the security screener of any detection.
The detector will also be able to screen patrons on the nonsecure side, to move the lines even faster.
While city officials said there was no particular threat that sparked a need for such security, Bigelow said “the world is changing,” and Maverik Center customers expressed a desire for stronger security measures.
“Our number one goal is to keep people safe,” Bigelow said.
Bruder said such measures are “commonplace and considered best practice,” in venues throughout the country.
Nicole Cottle, director of community and economic development for West Valley City, said the technology is should be in place within the next 30 days, and the venue will not close during the installation.