|Shawnee Fire Hall on the Move
Friday, October 3, 2003
By Star Traylor
After 48 years in the same building, Shawnee Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company will move today into a new station at 2210 Valor Drive.
The company will begin operating from the facility Saturday.
No matter how busy the move, Shawnee firefighters will continue to protect Winchester, said Jay Bailey, president of the company.
“We will be serving the community right through the middle of the move,” Bailey said Thursday. “I’m only praying that tomorrow we don’t have the largest fire in Winchester.”
Located at the corner of Valor Drive and Weems Lane in Winchester, the new station is about three blocks from the old building at 2333 Roosevelt Boulevard.
“This is our 50th anniversary year,” Bailey said. “We needed more space for the trucks. For the volunteers and career staff, we’re updating the living area.”
At 28,800 square feet, the new station gives firefighters more room than the 19,000-square-foot building from which they were operating.
Bailey said the company paid $3.1 million for the new building, $2 million of which was financed through BB&T. The rest was raised through bingo games at the fire hall, donations, and fund-raisers.
Bingo games were held at the old hall on Sunday and Tuesday nights, and will continue on those nights at the new station, Bailey said.
Shawnee Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company has 26 volunteer firefighters and 13 career firefighters, Fire Chief Russ Kerns said, adding that the whole department is excited about the move.
“It’s a highly upgraded area for what their existing living conditions are,” Kerns said.
John Smith, a project manager for Ricketts Construction Co., said the design and construction process for the new fire station took about two years.
He estimated the building was constructed in 12 to 14 months.
“The hard winter ... slowed us up a good bit,” he said.
The original Shawnee Volunteer Fire and Rescue station was located off Featherbed Lane, Bailey said. After moving from that building, the company spent about 48 years on Roosevelt Boulevard.
The Roosevelt Boulevard building has been sold to Grace Community Church, Bailey said. Grace Community officials plan to renovate the building for use as a church.
“I’m real happy the building’s going to still be serving the community,” Bailey said. “I would hate to see that building just torn down.”