Orange City Fire Department Looking To Expand Fire Station

A public vote will determine if the expansion will take place

A local fire station is looking to add 11,000 sq. ft. onto their facility.

The current space is too small lacking adequate training and work space, and has limited storage.

The expansion could be completed by November 2017, but that decision is up to the voters in Orange City, Iowa.

A vote will take place on March 1 to decide whether a $2.7 million bond should be issued to pay for a portion of an estimated $3.5 million dollar expansion on the current fire station. 

“We would really appreciate a yes vote from the public,” says Assistant Fire Chief of Orange City Fire Department, Robert Bruxvoort.

Bruxvoort says that ‘yes’ vote would avoid this scene: fire trucks squeezed tightly next to each other, and gear placed in the middle of the station where training would otherwise be taking place. 

“We need to do something to make it better,” says Bruxvoort. 

Firefighters have less than 60 seconds to put all their gear on before going out on a call, and with the limited space between the gear and the truck, Bruxvoort says it’s making that task difficult, and is creating safety hazards. 

“Where our bunker gear is placed right now it’s a close proximity to moving trucks, and then when the trucks are running, the diesel smoke is blowing on the gear,” says Bruxvoort. 

Bruxvoort says the issue stems from the growing city.

He says the current building was built in the early 1970’s, and since then the population has increased from 3,500 people to 6,000 people.

Making the number of calls coming in and the number of volunteer members increase as well. 

“So along with the volume of everything else growing and city growing, then the fire department needs to keep up and we need to have more space too,” says Bruxvoort. 

The assistant fire chief says the extra space will allow the department to train new members year round and it will cut down response times, all helping keep the public safe.

The vote will take place at the Living Water Church from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on March 1.

The fire station expansion will be approved if 60 percent of the voters vote ‘yes’ to the bond issuance.