LOCAL NEWS

Ahead Of Schedule

When Crawfordsville Fire Department’s new Station No. 2 opens this summer, firefighters can hang their hoses up to dry in the truck bay, clipping them on to hooks on the ceiling.

“I think they want me to put an electric hoist up there so they don’t have to pull them up by hand,” joked Dale Petrie, director of operations for the City of Crawfordsville, as he walked through the building last week.

Crews are slightly ahead of schedule on the $4.8 million project, which is slated to be finished in June. Construction began last year. The station will be more than 15 times larger the current facilities, which the department has long outgrown.

Construction manager Denny Barr of Envoy Inc. said the city was getting a good value for its investment, marveling at the amount of concrete used.

“This, I think, could substitute for a bomb shelter, I believe,” Barr said. “It’s incredibly built.”

Indianapolis-based Patterson Horth is the contractor. The project is being paid for through bonds.

Once drywalling is done, crews will finish electrical wiring and install the heating. Water is expected to be hooked up next week followed by the other utilities.

The larger vehicle bays will allow a third truck to be housed at the station. Trucks will exit onto Main Street, with firefighters able to control the traffic light at the Englewood Drive intersection.

There also will be space to work on equipment and train for rescues.

Firefighters will have an expanded kitchen, fitness room, family area and a patio on the ground level. A training room is designed for multi-purpose activities and open to crews from Station No. 1, which has slightly smaller training facilities.

Each of the three shift commanders will have their own computers and workspaces. Upstairs are the eight-bed living quarters, which boasts a television room.

“They’ll just be in heaven in this place,” Petrie said as he looked through the rooms.

Demolition of the current station is expected to take place about a week before the new facility opens to allow crews to finish the patio. Petrie said the downtown station will be the only one in service during that time, adding there are other buildings where the city can store trucks.