PRINCE GEORGE, BC: In 2021, safety in Prince George is taking a big step forward as the City’s new Fire Hall #1, with its strategically improved location, design, and capabilities, becomes operational. Construction of the new hall is now largely complete. The City expects fire suppression crews and equipment to move into the building and the facility to be activated as the new Fire Hall #1 by the end of the month. In late December, administrative staff began moving into the building.
Located next to City Hall at 7th Avenue and Dominion Street, the city’s older Fire Hall is more than 60 years old and no longer able to meet current standards as a fire and rescue facility, Emergency Operations Centre, and Fire Operations Communications Centre. A replacement for Fire Hall #1 was proposed by the City of Prince George in 2017 to enhance service to more of the city. During a referendum in October 2017, residents voted nearly 83% in favour of re-building Fire Hall #1.
Having crews and equipment strategically located at its more centralized site on Massey Drive will improve Fire Rescue’s eight-minute response time, which is critical for keeping fires contained to one room. After eight minutes, fires can spread into the rest of a structure, greatly increasing the risk of fatalities.
“The building design itself will also serve to improve response times. Fire Rescue crews’ workspaces and living quarters are located in close proximity to the fire apparatus. This means that when the fire alarm rings, the firefighters are able to quickly access their gear, board the fire trucks, and leave the building,” says Fire Chief John Iverson. “The new fire hall is able to house modern firefighting equipment and is built to modern, post-disaster standards, which is essential for the City’s main fire hall and emergency operations hub. The facility will also improve our ability to protect our firefighters with upgraded industrial hygiene and decontamination technology.”
Landscaping at the new facility is expected to be completed by the end of the summer of 2021. The Fire Operations Communications Centre and Dispatch is scheduled to be operational in the facility by the fall.
“Council is pleased that emergency services in Prince George are taking such a significant step forward with the completion of this important, state-of-the-art facility, which will enhance public health and safety in our City ” says Lyn Hall, Mayor of Prince George. “We would like to thank City staff, the design team, and construction crews for their hard work on this impressive new building, which will be serving our community for many years to come.”
In 2018, the City appointed HCMA Architects and Planning of Vancouver and an engineering design team led by L&M Engineering of Prince George to design the replacement Fire Hall #1. A local company, IDL Projects, served as the general contractor. In all, more than 250 people were employed during the construction of the new fire hall.
Prince George City Council will receive a report on the new hall during the January 11 meeting of Council.
Written and released by City of Prince George.
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