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Metro Interoperability Communications System (MICS)


The City of Des Moines has been designated by the COPS Office of the Department of Justice as the lead agency in developing, implementing and managing a multi-county interoperable voice radio system to serve police, fire and EMS agencies in the central Iowa area.


This project represents a collaborative effort that has been developed and endorsed by first responders, law enforcement, fire personnel, communications directors, emergency management, locally elected officials, and communications technicians throughout central Iowa, as well as the Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management Division of the Iowa Department of Public Defense.


Public Safety agencies in the Des Moines area operate on VHF, UHF frequencies, one privately owned SmartNet 800 MHz trunking system and one commercial 800 MHz EDACS system. Our project creates an interoperability network by linking together the FCC designated interoperable frequencies in the VHF, UHF and 800 MHz bands. This allows each agency to retain their investment in their current communications infrastructure.


The project utilizes four UHF, four VHF and four 800 MHz interoperability channels to establish four interagency channels for public safety use. Two of these channels will be established as fixed point systems to provide mobile service to the larger area. One of these will be used as a calling or hailer channel.

The other two channels will be incorporated into several portable repeaters that will be installed in various police and fire command vehicles as well as at the Des Moines International Airport for use at location specific events where multiple agencies and disciplines are involved but coverage requirements are limited.


This project will greatly increase the voice radio interoperability of police, fire and emergency medical services in the Des Moines MSA and improve service to the community.


Below is a link to a flyer with more information about Metro Interoperability Communication System


Des Moines MICS flyer