On Saturday, November 19, Pueblo West Fire Department will host a community meeting to discuss plans for the construction of a new fire station on the west side of the Metro District. In the past two years, calls for service on the west side of Pueblo West have increased 22%, and as one of the fastest growing communities in Colorado, the call volume will likely continue to increase.
Currently, it takes firefighters 11-17 minutes to respond to the far north side by Katmando’s General Store. “The goal is to reduce that response time by at least half with a new station located on South McCulloch West,” said Fire Chief Brian Caserta. This location was chosen based on the location of the current fire station #2 that is unmanned. “Moving the new station location further west, provides better immediate access to a primary road and a response further to the west of the community,” Chief Caserta continued. The location also provides closer fire service to properties that are currently outside of the Insurance Rating Organization (ISO) zone. The ISO standard requires homes to be within five miles of a fire station or else face a lower rating that may result in increased insurance premiums. Recently, some residents were dropped by their insurance company due to low ISO ratings.
Pueblo West is pursuing the design and build of the new station in the most cost effective manner possible. The station was designed by architecture students through a program at the University of Colorado Denver. Utilizing UC Denver drastically reduced design costs that can number in the tens of thousands. Through the program, Pueblo West paid $2,500 and was matched with a Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) grant. “We have budgeted for engineering costs in 2017, and hope to apply for grants to allow for construction to begin in 2018, “said Chief Caserta. The department estimates the station to cost approximately $1 million, but the engineering phase will provide a more true cost of the buildout. Through smart planning with DOLA grants, Pueblo West hopes to have the engineering costs reimbursed and the 50% of the buildout funded via a matching grant.
“A new fire station on the west side of Pueblo West will both reduce critical response times and increase the ISO ratings for homeowners in the area. With available grants through DOLA, we have the opportunity to provide this new infrastructure at a fraction of the cost,” said District Manager, Darrin Tangeman.
The public meeting to discuss the new fire station plan will be held at 9 a.m. on Saturday, November 19 at the Pueblo West Shrine Club located at 1501 W. McCulloch Blvd.
For more information:
Community Engagement Manager