Chattanooga officials and community leaders break ground for new fire station

Chattanooga, Tenn. – Chattanooga city officials and community leaders gathered together this morning, March 6th,  to break ground for a new fire station for the Highland Park community. The new station will be located on property adjacent to the aging and outdated Station 5, which has been serving the Highland Park community since 1962.

With shovels in hand, Mayor Andy Berke, City Councilman Yusuf Hakeem, who represents the city’s 9th district that includes Highland Park, and Fire Chief Chris Adams dug up some dirt to mark the occasion. They were joined by Donna Williams, administrator of the city’s department of Economic and Community Development, along with representatives of the Maclellan Foundation, the Highland Park Neighborhood Association and other community leaders.

Fire Chief Chris Adams said the new fire station has been a long time coming. “A lot of things had to fall into place to make this new station a reality,” said Chief Adams. “It required help from many people, but in the end, this new station is going to have a very positive impact on this community.”

The new Station 5 will cost approximately $1.6 million and will be built on the empty lots right next to the current station on S. Willow Street. The old station will then be razed. This will be a one-story, 8,000 square foot structure, that is LEED certified. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) was developed by the U.S. Building Council to establish standards for environmentally sustainable construction.

The new station was designed by Franklin Architects. A neighborhood-friendly design was very important to the city and the fire department. Compared to the newer stations around the city, which have a distinctly modern look, this station will feature a more residential aesthetic. It will have gable roofs and brick and clapboard siding more befitting Highland Park. Matt Brown with Franklin Architects said the challenge for the station’s design was the size of the truck bay. Specifically, how to either dress up or hide a large garage while still siting the full program of the building within the neighborhood property setbacks. “We located the fire apparatus bays toward the rear of the property,” said Brown, “and we sited the single story living quarters toward the front so the peak of the roof will help hide the large garage space.”

To demonstrate good resource stewardship, Franklin and the Fire Department worked to balance cost-effective construction methods with long term durability, all while meeting the City’s stormwater control requirements. Construction will be completed by Construction Consultants, Inc. and is scheduled to begin early this month.

The new station has additional details added to it.

There is a two-vehicle apparatus bay with five sleeping rooms, showers and locker rooms. One bay will house a 75-foot quint. A quint carries 1,500 feet of supply line, a full complement of ground ladders, a 75-foot aerial ladder, and several hundred feet of fire attack lines, nozzles, hose couplings and related equipment. It also carries 500 gallons of water, for quick attack on a fire, which is critical to fire control until they can establish a dedicated water supply from a fire hydrant. The second bay can house additional vehicles and equipment if necessary.

Staffing will continue with 15 firefighters, with 5 working each of the 3 shifts. Station 5 will primarily serve the Highland Park community, but will also respond to other parts of the city when needed. The station will have a day room and other support facilities. The apparatus bay will consist of a pre-engineered metal building with single-slope rigid frames, metal wall panels on steel girts above a 6′ 0″ high concrete masonry unit base and metal roof panels on zee-purlins. The remainder of the building will be conventional wood framing.

* Attached is a photo from this morning’s groundbreaking ceremony, and architectural drawings of the new Station 5.

*Photos by Bruce Garner

Categories: Chattanooga, Hamilton County, Local News