The Windsor-Severance Fire Rescue board decided during a special meeting Wednesday to hire Broomfield-based architect Allred & Associates to develop the new Fire Station 2, marking a major step forward in a long-awaited project.
The new 9,400-square-foot facility will be built on a five-acre parcel of land at the intersection of Blue Spruce Drive and Timber Ridge Parkway in Severance. It will replace the current station, which was originally a pole barn. It was never designed to have living quarters.
Officials hope to have the project completed within 18 months, though additional details will become available in the coming weeks. The actual construction phase is expected to take about six months.
Representatives from Allred & Associates — the firm that designed Station 3 in Windsor — were available to field board questions Wednesday before unanimously being chosen to head the project. The group has designed numerous other large-scale firehouses including some in Denver, Boulder and Arvada.
The fire board plans to model the new station after Station 3 in Windsor, though some adjustments are expected.
Brad Bonnet, from the architecture firm, explained the painstaking attention to detail the company will take in developing the center, which could feature training facilities, including for repelling and climbing exercises and a potentially LEED-certified design.
During a re-financing effort of Station 1, the board was able to free up about $1.3 million, which will fund the new project, Fire Chief Herb Brady said. No new mill levies or fee increases are anticipated.
Though no new employees will be hired, Brady said the added space and modern facility could accommodate additional volunteer firefighters. Despite a 2009 conversion to house limited amounts of fire-fighting equipment and retrofit the facility, the structure has been lacking for years, Brady said.
The fire board will begin noting slight design changes in the coming weeks, ahead of a series of November meetings with the developer and fire officials. Bonnet stressed a need to involve the community and nearby residents in a transparent and educational process through mailings and social media — a tactic that he said has seen great success in his experience.
“You need to gain the ownership of the community,” he said. “I think it’s in your best interest to inform them of the process because then they truly take ownership in that building.”
Community meetings are expected in the coming months, and additional information will be posted on www.wsfr.us. as it becomes available.