NEWTON, NC (April 17, 2013) – Plans to build a new headquarters fire station in Newton are moving forward as the Newton City Council voted on Tuesday to purchase four parcels of land on South Brady Avenue for a total of $395,500. The properties are adjacent to Eastview Cemetery.
Mayor Anne P. Stedman said, “Building a new fire station is one of the priorities the City Council identified at its visioning workshop in February. We want to provide our citizens the best public safety services, and this is a positive step in that direction.”
The City Council made the decision in three separate votes following a closed session. The three motions were to build a fire station, purchase four parcels of land to be used for the new fire station and to authorize the City Manager to negotiate contracts for each parcel. For all three votes, council members Robert C. Abernethy Jr. and Wes Weaver voted in opposition.
The current headquarters fire station is located on East A Street. The building previously housed Public Works and Sanitation trucks. In 1958, the building was renovated to accommodate the fire station. In the last 50 years, the fire department has outgrown the building and space is an issue. Additionally, the building may have asbestos and there are structural concerns and roofing and mechanical issues with the building.
The total estimated cost of the project $3.05 million, which includes the land purchase, construction, architectural and engineering and fire equipment, kitchen appliances and furnishings. The Newton City Council in March approved the Capital Improvement Plan for fiscal years 2014 to 2018, which designates $100,000 for the project in fiscal year 2013 and $2.95 million in fiscal year 2014.
Newton Fire Chief Kevin Yoder said, “I believe that City Council’s decision to construct the new headquarters fire station on Brady Avenue will positively impact our response times throughout the City of Newton and the entire fire district. Furthermore, I believe this location will beneficially impact the level of fire protection we provide to the citizens well into the future.”