Stick to original plan regarding fire hall expansion
By Curt Ekren
Let’s get back to the original plan and keep the fire hall where it is.
When I was on the Rugby City Council in the ’80s, plans were being made for the fire department’s future expansion. When the lot directly across the street from the current fire hall came up for sale, the leadership decided that the lot would be ideal for that purpose. The purchase was requested, and the council approved it for a whopping $70,000. Now it appears that we are being asked to abandon that purchase, plus the current fire hall. How can we just throw away money like that?
The argument about passing by school zones is something to keep in mind, but it should be able to be handled with training in the school system. I have not heard of any problems or complaints in past years from school officials or the police department.
I also do not like the idea of destroying a park that gets a lot of use (I would suspect more than that of Ellery Park). Numerous people use that park for family gatherings, a place for the kids to play on the equipment and a fenced basketball court.
From my observation, the current location seems to be very convenient for several firemen, since the first response unit is on its way within an extremely short period time after the whistle/pager goes off. That would be lost with a hall on the highway or other isolated area.
I greatly appreciate all that our firemen do for our city. The amount of time that they put in is commendable, but we are a small town not flush with money. The current fire hall has served the community for several years, and as far as I know, is still in good shape. Wouldn’t it be much more cost-effective to simply continue with the original plan to build another building across the street?
Ekren is a Rugby resident.
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