THIS is how Fleetwood’s new £2m fire station will look when it is completed in summer 2012.
The latest designs for the state-of-the-art building have now been released by Lancashire Fire & Rescue Service, just as preparation work at the site gets under way.
Fleetwood’s new station will be based on the same Radcliffe Road site as the existing one, meaning firefighters will work from a temporary building there before the new one is ready.
The current building was erected in 1962 and has badly needed replacing for some time.
Station manager Neil Taylor told the Weekly News: “Our present building is dilapidated and no longer fit for purpose.
“The new one will be more than just a new building – it will enable us to work much more closely with the community.
“We will have different groups here in a special meeting room, and I believe it will make our fire prevention activities in Fleetwood even better.”
But he added: “I would like to reassure people that while the building work is carried out here, we will continue to offer the same firefighting and fire prevention work that we have always done.”
As well as the purpose-built areas where community groups can meet, there will be a rest room, canteen and gymnasium.
And there will be accommodation where firefighters can live while they are on duty.
The diggers moved in last week but the old station won’t be demolished until June.
In the meantime equipment will gradually be moved out and the temporary building is expected to be up and running by May, where the firemen will work for around a year. There will also be a temporary appliance bay for the station’s two fire engines.
Once the station has been reduced to rubble and the site cleared by mid July, the first of the building work for the new station is expected to begin in August, and should be complete by June 2012.
Station manager Taylor added: “The new station will be much more environmentally green – there will be a rainwater harvester and it will be more energy efficient.”
Fleetwood’s scheme is part of a £16m Private Finance Initiative (PFI) project across the North West involving 16 news stations.
The scheme was initially approved by the previous Labour administration, but after a review the current government agreed to press ahead with the project.
All 16 stations are being built by developer Balfour Beatty, including three other Lancashire facilities at Blackburn, Chorley and Burnley.