Lethbridge currently has four fire stations across the city, three of which are located east of the Old Man River, but that is in the process of changing.
“Time is critical,” said Greg Adair, Deputy Fire Chief with Lethbridge Fire and Emergency Services. “When we talk about fire, we know we need to get there as soon as we can, especially with new home construction.
“New homes burn much quicker than the older homes do.”
In 1980, Fire Station No. 2 was built on Whoop-Up Drive and Jerry Potts Boulevard.
West Lethbridge has grown 10 times its size in the last 40 years; now home to nearly half the city.
Due to its rapid expansion, the City of Lethbridge initiated the construction of its fifth fire station in 2019.
“We’ve done some review through our Fire Service Master Plan, which has identified the need of an additional fire hall,” said Adair.
Lethbridge Fire and EMS are currently in the training process of 25 new hires in order to be prepared for the opening of the new facility.
The facility is located approximately five minutes south of the current fire station in the west, which the city says is a strategic move to better serve the growing communities of SunRidge and the Canyons.
“We feel it’s going to be a facility that’s going to last them for a long time,” said Jace Adams, project manager with the city’s Facility Services department.
“Similarly to how the downtown Park ‘n’ Ride was built, the fire station is made of precast concrete wall panels. This means concrete panels are pre-constructed then craned in place at the site.”
Adams says this method of construction will have residents see the facility go up in a very short amount of time, with the opening of the facility expected in early 2021.
“It’s 1,235 square metres, which is about a 20 per cent increase on the current west side fire station,” Adams said. He added Fire Station No. 2 will remain operational as the city plans for even more additions to the city in the future.
According to the city’s website, the project has incurred $1,895,753.84 in expenses out of its $10,300,000 budget.
More details on the project can be found at www.lethbridge.ca/firestation5.