In just a few short months, firefighters are expected to move into the new Fire Station #3 across from Anoka-Ramsey Community College.
Construction on the newest fire station in Coon Rapids, off of Mississippi Boulevard and 111th Avenue, began just over a year ago. After working through a long snowy winter, Kinghorn Construction job superintendent, Daryl Lepper says the project is back on track.
"We're at the stage now where we're trying to finish up on the north side with the masonry, with the arches and all the brick on the north side so we can start curb and gutter sidewalks," said Lepper.
The interior of the 32,000 square foot building saw the final pour of concrete last week. Now with roughly three dozen contractors on site, daily, the finishing work can take place throughout the building.
"When the firefighter comes in off the hallway the door closes behind them, they have total privacy,”
Coon Rapids Fire Chief John Piper described some of the unique features of the new building on a recent tour last week. Chief Piper showed off the large, multi-purpose classroom.
"All classroom training will be done in this room,” said Piper. “But the room is also used in the event of a large fire, as a fire emergency operations center."
The apparatus bays provide extra space not found in any of the current fire stations in Coon Rapids.
"There's four double-deep bays that will house a variety of equipment including trucks, trailers and different equipment," said Piper.
This new, larger fire station, includes two additional drive-thru bays, for the front line fire engine and rescue truck. When fully operational, the station will be a key training ground for firefighters.
"We've really put a lot of emphasis on training,” said Piper. “And in order to do that, you have to build the training props into the station. So we have a lot of different things here that our training officer will be able to use to train our firefighters to be proficient and safe."
Built into the station's design are the latest health standards aimed at keeping fire fighters safe from harm.
"The HVAC systems make sure that everything all the air on the apparatus floor stays out there,” said Piper. “And basically it separates all the carcinogens from the turnout gear after a fire. And of course the trucks starting up and the exhaust, all that stays on the apparatus floor and there's sensors there to ventilate it as necessary based on the levels."
The new building will soon replace the old Fire Station 3 which has been in service to the community for over 50 years.
"We look forward to probably the end of July taking possession," said Piper.