BY D’ARCY PATRICK EGAN
Chief Keith Kahler and his fire crews and EMTs lined up in front of the brand new Danbury Township Fire Station at 7870 E. Harbor Road on Saturday, Oct. 15 at 10 a.m. They were joined by a wealth of township officials and residents as Danbury Township Trustee Dianne Rozak cut the bright ribbon to officially open the $6.2 million facility.
The curiosity about the state-of-the-art facility also lured hundreds of local residents and their kids to enjoy supervised climbs on fire-fighting equipment on Saturday, and a tour of the facilities.
Danbury Township voters approved a .75 mill levy in November 2020 to build the new fire station. The site chosen is adjacent to the intersection of State Route 163, North Shore Boulevard and Englebeck Road.
The Ohio Department of Transportation also has a roundabout traffic control structure being created at that intersection. It has caused traffic problems, a reason ODOT waited until after the tourism season to begin construction and require a one-lane road and detours in the area.
The roundabout is forecast to be completed on Tuesday, Nov. 15.
The new Danbury Township Fire Department was completed just in time to allow multiple uses. With a large meeting room available there, Danbury Trustees will be using that meeting room to allow its Zoning Commission and Zoning Commission Board to meet there while floor construction can be done at the Danbury Township Hall through November.
Danbury Township will be selling or repurposing its two fire stations that were in operation for years in order to defray costs on the new fire station. The new fire station and all of its amenities will allow Danbury Township homeowners to qualify for deductions on their homeowners insurance.
The 26,000-square-foot fire station and parking lot are on a 7-acre field, allowing community meetings and other social events. Firemen will also have user-friendly overnight accommodations for its fire crews.
“Before this new station was completed, firemen didn’t have a lot of space for the comforts of a break room, exercise room, meeting rooms and work space,” said Chief Kahler. “Before our move here recently, firemen were staying in four to 12-foot by 14-foot rooms.”
One reason more space is needed these days is that more fire trucks and equipment are now under roof, and trucks and ancillary gear has increased in size.