Thursday, February 28, 2013

Combination Fire Station Considered

In November of this year, the citizens of Taylorsville will have the opportunity to vote in favor of, or opposition to, joining the Salt Lake Valley Fire Service Area (the Fire District) as a member of the Unified Fire Authority (UFA). Regardless of that outcome, City officials and UFA administrators recognize the need to employ additional fire personnel and construct a new station within the City, and are drafting plans for the next fiscal year.

For several years, there has been a desire to construct a third fire station near the southeast quadrant of the City in order to handle the emergency call volume and offer better response times. In addition, there is growing need to rebuild Station 117 (4545 South Redwood), which was constructed in 1964 and is no longer fully suitable.

On February 13, 2013, under the direction of Mayor Rechtenbach, fire administration presented to the Council a new concept with respect to the aforementioned construction needs and additional personnel. Rather than build a third station and rebuild Station 117, it is now proposed that one larger station be built farther south along Redwood Road. This would accommodate two fire companies, which could then respond both north and south, handle the respective call volume, and respond in a reasonable timeframe based on current standards (mapping, statistics numbers, estimated costs, etc. were presented to the Council and will be made available for public exhibit in the coming weeks).

In addition, it is proposed this station be built with a large community room which could handle promotion and graduation ceremonies for the organization, as well as training opportunities on a regional basis. This room would also be made available for meeting purposes by City officials, various sub-committees, and volunteer groups. Construction of an internal tower for additional training purposes is also being considered.

Given the various dynamics within the City and for UFA, this proposal has merit in many respects, as it would ultimately save tax dollars (constructing one station instead of two), meet the emergency response criteria, and serve to draw others into the community on a regular basis for the various aforementioned activities.

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