The Origins of Guard Booths & Security Stations

The Origins of Guard Booths & Security Stations

A modern security booth can give your site the protection it needs, offering a safe and comfortable shelter from which your security team can operate. While guard booths have been around for centuries, over time they have served a variety of purposes in addition to being a safe haven and control center for security personnel.

Let’s take a look at the origins of security stations and how they have evolved over time.

Dormitories & Storage Units

Going all the way back to Ancient Rome, we know that some security stations were actually used as sleeping quarters and storage units. Called a castrum in Latin, these were fortified camps that were built once the Roman army had marched for the day. In fact, regulations required that the army retires to a proper camp at the end of each day; therefore, the castrum was constructed and deconstructed in between each march. This ensured that soldiers were well-rested and that military supplies, such as food and weapons, were protected from raiders.

This tradition evolved in the 18th century, as sentries would eat and sleep in guardhouses in between their shifts. Instead of breaking down the camps and rebuilding them, these more permanent installations, such as those at the Fortress of Louisbourg in Nova Scotia, were well furnished and often accommodated dozens of security agents.


In the past, guard houses were also designed with jails, or holding cells, as well. This was convenient for security professionals, who could round up suspected intruders or assailants and throw them behind bars immediately rather than wait for backup. Today, this security design is fairly uncommon. However, some college and professional sports venues are rumored to have their jails – even their own courtrooms – built adjacent to their security stations.


Security Check Points

Over time, guardhouses have evolved to serve as checkpoints, traffic control stations, and parking attendant booths. In applications ranging from residential and commercial to industrial and governmental, security checkpoints are critical to controlling the flow of vehicles and pedestrian traffic in order to keep sites secure and track who goes in and out.

In a post 9/11 world, the role of the security station as a checkpoint has become increasingly important – from protecting airports and power plants to college campuses and private businesses. That’s why modern security booth design features are necessary to make even a simple checkpoint safe.

Modernize Your Security

B.I.G. Enterprises has played a pivotal role in the evolution of the modern security station, designing and manufacturing custom guard booths for every industry since 1963. We specialize in creating unique security solutions that meet and exceed expectations, using state-of-the-art construction techniques and high quality materials.

Whether you need a basic security guard booth for your parking garage or a blast resistant booth for a military base, we’ve got you covered. For a free estimate, give us a call today at (800) 669-1449 or get in touch with us by filling out our contact form.

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