Ground Broken for East Side Fire Station
Ground was broken this morning for a new East Side Fire Station in the 700 block of N. Irving Street in Allentown. The ceremony was attended by Mayor Ed Pawlowski, Fire Chief Bob Scheirer, members of City Council, representatives of East Side neighborhood groups and nearby residents.
The city budgeted $1.8 million for the three-bay, two-story station. Bids came in $1 million over budget last year. To reduce costs, the city eliminated an elevator and reduced the total area by 600 square feet. New bids for the project were opened last week. Water line installation will begin soon.
“The new station will be a substantial improvement over the old facility,” said Pawlowski. “The new station will be better for the firefighters and the equipment. It will also have women’s quarters which were lacking in the old station.”
The new station will accommodate up to eight firefighters and two paramedics.
“The old station was basically a garage with extremely tight living quarters,” said Scheirer. “The workout area consisted of a treadmill placed between the firefighters’ beds.”
The original station, built in 1953, was closed in September 2011 because of structural damage. Mold was also an issue. The concrete floors were too thin and the living quarters were wood frame construction. The station was demolished last June.
Pawlowski said, “This is another part of the transformation of Allentown that is visible in all parts of our city, and we are very happy to erect this new facility on the East Side.”
The new building was designed by W2A Design Group of Allentown.
Boyle Construction of Allentown is managing the project for the city.
The new station is expected to be ready for occupancy before the end of the year.
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