Plans for Stillwater's New Fire Station Move Ahead

The Stillwater City Council on Tuesday approved the special use permits and rezoning needed to construct a $6.9 million fire station alongside the new National Guard Armory.

It’s been years in the making, but the Stillwater City Council on Tuesday approved the special use permits and rezoning needed to construct a $6.9 million fire station in conjunction with the National Guard’s Armory project.

The proposal has been in the works since November 2010 when the city purchased an 18.92-acre site that could accommodate a new armory and a “centrally-located” fire station immediately northwest of the Myrtle Street and Maryknoll Drive intersection on County Road 12.

The 79,465 square-foot armory and seven-bay fire station will operate independently, but share space because the buildings are attached. Some of the armory space will be available for public use, including a gym, commercial-grade kitchen and three classrooms.

The project includes a new public road that will connect Boutwell Road just east of Newberry Court North to County Road 12 at Maryknoll Drive.

The reason for the road, according to city staff, is that neighbors along Boutwell Road want both Boutwell and County Road 12 to share the armory traffic; the road must satisfy the county’s arterial road system’s functionality; and a direct connection from the fire station to County Road 12 is needed to keep response times in an acceptable range.

At Tuesday’s meeting several Croixwood residents raised concerns over traffic and noise connected the new armory and fire station. 

The City Council approved the development of 35-percent design documentation for the future fire station on Dec. 6, 2011. This fall, the Council authorized city staff to proceed with planning for a single station fire-protection model that includes a new 29,600 square foot fire station.

That decision shot down the possibility of a substation located in the eastern part of the Stillwater. There is a proposal to expand the police department into the current facility at City Hall.

While the Department of Defense plans to build the new $17.5 million National Guard Armory, Congress has not approved funding for the project. Until the funding comes through, additional design work on the project is on hold.

If Congress approves the funding early in 2013, construction on the new fire station could begin next fall, and be ready for occupancy by fall 2014.

Construction on the armory will not begin until the spring of 2014. If constructed together, the fire station will be complete in spring of 2015, and the armory will be complete in fall of 2015.

Click here to view public documents relating to this project.

limeex2 December 07, 2012 at 05:04 PM
Would someone please explain to me why we need a New Armory? Is this a local or a Federal Deal?
Shawn Hogendorf December 07, 2012 at 05:08 PM
The armory is a federal deal. The fire station is obviously local.
David Korte December 07, 2012 at 08:34 PM
I want to thank the council and the city staff for their commitment to public safety in building the new fire station, which will balance response times throughout the city!
Shawn Hogendorf December 07, 2012 at 08:40 PM
The assistant fire chief told the council on Tuesday, and I know you heard this David, that the new location will allow 6-minute response times to 98 percent of the coverage zone.
Randy Marsh December 07, 2012 at 08:52 PM
You're wrong, David. It only makes response times faster for all the new housing that has less of a need for service. What it also does is make all those century old houses that give Stillwater its wonderful character more vulnerable. The response times from downtown certainly will not be a problem once the new bridge is built. A new fire station is a complete waste of tax dollars, which is why it makes so much sense to Harycki and his bobos.
Susan December 07, 2012 at 10:14 PM
Randy is right. Response times for the downtown area, the north hill, and the south hill will all be much LONGER. Only those on the west side of the city will see a shorter response time. The west side, may I add, that have newer homes that are probably built to be more fire resistant than the older homes to the east. HUGE waste of money during a recession!! Yet the Mayor loves to cry poverty when it's not his pet projects.
Daren Anderson December 08, 2012 at 12:09 AM
So the city does a study to check response times and says that 98% will have 6 minute response time, but you two "speculate" that's very wrong. Do either of you have any proof or examples you can share where the response time is so dramatically impacted? I believe to get from the new station back to the old station wouldn't take more than 3minutes.... And the north hill is probably 3 more minutes from there.
Susan December 08, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Daren, common sense tells a person that spending millions to move the fire station one and a half miles and FARTHER away from three of the largest (oldest) neighborhoods in the city, is probably a move that is not NEEDED during a period of financial hardship and cut backs.
Randy Marsh December 08, 2012 at 12:35 AM
I would point out that this new station is unnecessary regardless of whether the city is dealing with a huge surplus or budget cuts. If we truly need it, you find a way to get the money, but the only fires taking place on the west side of town are from those who haven't figured out how to deep fry a turkey correctly on their back porch. This is a clear example, much like the liquor ordinance, where the council needs to do its own research rather than just buying whatever Glaser and Gannaway are selling. I know that fires are just a small percentage of fire calls, but has the city actually shown where most of the calls have come from in the past year or so? I know they sure didn't check to see what the response times were with the bridge out and the less resulting traffic.
Don Stiff December 08, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Come on people the city is growing you have to look a head . The city is getting larger and the Fire department serves Grant township and Stillwater township as well . Times will get better and city will grow look a head!
Susan December 08, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Which is why I said "that is not NEEDED during a period of financial hardship and cut backs." Let's make sure we can pay our bills without gouging our tax paying citizens before we decide to pay millions, during a recession when our state (which means our city) will be making cuts, for something that is not a need at this time, but a want...it's "on sale" because of the armory, that doesn't mean we should build it now.
David Korte December 08, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Mahalo Don for the positive attitude!
Don Stiff December 08, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Thank you Dave


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