Groundbreaking to Mark Official Start of Construction for State-of-the-Art East Fire Station
EDWARDSVILLE – City officials are happy to announce a groundbreaking will take place this month for the East Fire Station, a state-of-the-art facility that will enhance the City’s ability to serve and protect residents for years to come.
The groundbreaking will take place at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, November 29. The City cannot accommodate the public for the ceremony out of an abundance of caution as the site does not offer public parking at this time. A public open house for the new facility will take place when complete.
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“We’re prioritizing the well-being of our residents as we move forward with the East Fire Station, a key part of the City’s long-term plan for public safety,” Mayor Art Risavy said. “I’m appreciative for the support of the aldermen as we implement it.”
The $5.1 million East Fire Station will be built at 7407 Governors Parkway. The new facility will be part of the City’s three-station approach to ensuring the quickest response for fire and emergency medical calls.
The other two facilities are the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Campus Station, which opened in 2016 at 783 Northwest University Drive; and the Public Safety Building at 333 S. Main Street, which opened in 2017 and serves as headquarters for the City’s Police and Fire Departments.
“We are committed to doing everything we can to ensure the safety of everyone we serve,” Fire Chief James Whiteford said. “I am excited about the East Fire Station because it helps us to accomplish that mission.”
The East Fire Station will encompass 8,400 square feet of space and include three double bays to house multiple trucks and ambulances, Whiteford said. It will include environmentally smart features, such as solar panels to offset electricity costs; radiant floor heating to efficiently warm the bays and to dry wet equipment, and bi-fold bay doors that open and close in about a third of the time to speed emergency egress and limit building heat loss. I
It will replace Station 2 on Montclaire Avenue, a smaller facility built in 1969 that lacks needed infrastructure for evolving high-tech emergency response capabilities. A new location in the City’s eastern corridor also was recommended as part of a 2015 service area study that considered response times, projected population growth and density, and expected future development. “Fire Stations don’t get built that frequently,” Whiteford said.
“Typically when you are planning one you are looking at a 50-year building, so it needs to be positioned properly and have capabilities for the next 50 to 60 years of service.” Site preparations and utility work have begun for the station, which is expected to open in November 2023. Morrissey Construction Co. of Godfrey is the builder, and AAIC Inc. of Collinsville is the architect.
The Bank of Madison County, a division of the Bank of Belleville, partnered with the City to issue $6.87 million in general obligation bonds covering the cost of the facility, a new aerial ladder firetruck and improvements to the Campus Fire Station.
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