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New Bradford Fire Hall set to open next month

The construction of the new $6.4 million firehall is almost completed

The new Bradford Fire Hall being built on Melbourne Drive is near completion and should open early next month. 

Last week, the town's Director of Community Services Terry Foran provided a tour of the new two-storey facility to Mayor Rob Keffer, members of council, and BWG Fire. 

In 2018, council endorsed a plan to re-purpose the current station on Melbourne Drive to house the town's public works and transportation staff,  while building a new station next door on town-owned vacant land. 

The new hall was needed as the town has outgrown its 829 square metre hall, built in 1989.  A master plan study showed the town required a 1,765-square-metre facility to serve the population and a combined full-time and volunteer fire service. 

Construction of the new $6.4 million firehall began last summer and is funded largely through development charges levied on new construction. The station is part of a multi-year project to support the town’s growing population.

The multi-year plan includes the revamping of the old station as a Public Works centre, as well as upgrading the storage facility on Line 11, which was completed in 2019, under budget. 

The program also includes plans for a second fire station in Bond Head, to be completed by 2022 at a cost of $4.4 million, that will serve both the Highway 400 employment lands and the hamlet of Bond Head. 

Deputy Fire Chief Olaf Lamerz says the idea is to give all three buildings: fire, police, and public works, a campus-like look and feel with its modern design.  

"We wanted to give it that campus exterior from the front so they know it's a working property, so you will see some changes to the exterior of the property to match what is going on with the other ones (buildings)," he said. 

The new hall will feature dorms for the firefighters to sleep in, a gym, a mezzanine, and a room for bunker gear. In the upstairs, there will a community room for training and meetings, along with offices for administrative staff. 

Lamerz says the new building will be fully embraced by both volunteer and full-time fire crews. 

"This changeover is going to be a really big improvement with a day room, proper kitchen and dining area and they (the firefighters) won't have to do training in the day room, they can do it in the training room," he said. 

Behind the fire hall will be the public works yard and storage shed, as well as a paved parking lot. 

Inside the bay is an extraction system built-in with hoses that attach to the exhaust of the trucks, which vents out from the top. 

"It maintains a good level of clean air," said Lamerz. 

Lamerz says the town would like to incorporate BWG Fire's history inside the community room and hallways inside the building, by including photos of the crews taken by local media over the years. 

"We want to definitely pay tribute to the past," he said. 

A grand opening ceremony will take place sometime this fall to commemorate the grand opening of the new facility. 

Natasha Philpott

About the Author: Natasha Philpott

Natasha is the Editor for BradfordToday and InnisfilToday. She graduated from the Media Studies program at The University of Guelph-Humber. She lives in Bradford with her husband, two boys and two cats.
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