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Cost of a new fire station in Boyceville could be $2 million

BOYCEVILLE — The Five-Year Planning Committee for the area fire department was presented with proposed plans and figures for a new fire station last week.

David Cihasky, of the Five Bugles presented the Committee with a “Space Needs Analysis” that contained information about the size of the present fire station and what they figured was needed for the community in a new and large facility. Five Bugles is the Architectural firm out of Eau Claire that the committee chose to do the study and put together a plan for a new fire station.

Cihasky presented a document that showed the present fire station and how the equipment was placed in that building. He noted that trucks are parked inside the old building with only inches between them. He also had a space needs summary that the firm put together after meeting with fire department officials to determine what the department’s needs are.

The document also had two possible site locations and three different floor plans for a new structure. Those plans showed a complete structure of 18,000 square feet, as compiled from information from the fire department to a 10,330 square foot building that would have the possibility of being enlarged in the future to meet the department’s growing needs. “You cannot afford the 18,000 square foot building,” Cihasky stated. The number of square feet of space in the present fire station is just short of 5,000.

Cihasky stated that cost of the steel type building would run at $130 to $160 a square foot and noted that the 10,000 square foot building could be done for less than $2 million. But he stated that those costs did not include land cost or the cost of extending utility service to the structure. Cihasky was asked how much the costs would increase each year. He stated that he could only estimate a three to five percent increase but noted that at present there is a building boom and it is hard to get contractors to bid.

One of the sites that were proposed was on the village’s north side along Nordveien Drive and the other site was on Highway 79 just south of the BP convenient store.

Rick Monn, Chairman of the Town of Station and Chair of the planning committee questioned members of the committee about bringing these plans and costs to the full fire board at the next meeting or wait until they can get cost estimates for the land and have a better picture of the total project cost. After much discussion, members of the group will try to get those costs together before the next meeting.

Why wait was a comment from a committee member and Ned Hahn, a member of the Hay River Town Board, suggested, “In a matter of time there will be a new fire hall, do we want to wait until the prices goes up three to five percent a year?”

Fire Board

Before the five-year planning committee meeting members of the fire board met for their regular monthly meeting. They heard from fire chief Brian Marlette that they had ten runs this past month for a total to date this year of 65. The fire account has some $185,813 on hand.

But the highlight of the meeting was a letter read by Chief  Marlette from St. John’s Ev. Lutheran Church, which stated. “This gift you have received today, was made possible by the efforts of the members of St. John’s Ev. Lutheran Church of Boyceville, Wisconsin. For over 126 years, this church served the Boyceville community and surrounding areas until its closure in 2014.

Your acknowledgement of this gift to your members would honor those who have built it up through the Lord Jesus Christ. The remaining members hope that this gift will help you to continue God’s work. God Bless you all.”

Chief Marlette told the meeting that the check was for $18,350 and was divided up between the fire department and the Ambulance service.

Ambulance Board

Following the fire meeting, the members of the Ambulance board met and reviewed the financial statement and heard the director Matt Feeney describe how the service is prepared for handling suspected Ebola patients. “We have equipment on hand that will keep our people safe,” he continued, “we are taking steps to make sure our staff and community are kept safe.” He did concede that a chance of an Ebola case in our area is very slim.

Feeney also noted that the service had three new members. One is an advance EMT and the other two are basic EMTs. He told about receiving a grant to allow the service to purchase a $14,000 power lift cot. He also noted that they are working on a $25,000 grant for the purchase of new gear, which is clothing and turnout gear.

He also updated the meeting on the progress of their new quarters. “Hopefully we are in the new building by Christmas,” Feeney stated, and told the meeting that the money from the Lutheran Church will help pay for equipment in the new structure.