tyler — As part of the City of Tyler’s plan to boost emergency response times and meet the needs of the growing community, the Tyler Fire Department celebrated the opening of the new Fire Station 5 on July 11, 2012. The opening was celebrated with a “hose cutting” ceremony and tours of the new station, located at 1532 S. Bennett.
Lochner BWR Division designed the 8,865 square foot fire station which was constructed by Watson Commercial Contractors. The $1.7 million structure was paid for in cash, with funds from the Half-Cent Sales Tax as well as a one-time donation from the Cascades Development.
“Ensuring the citizens of Tyler are safe is a priority for the City of Tyler,” said Mayor Barbara Bass. ”Paying cash for this project is a testament to the strong financial management of the City of Tyler.”
The new station will replace the existing Station 5, located at 2815 Frankston Highway, which has been in use since the mid 1980’s.
In 2003, the Tyler Fire Department began implementation of a progressive fire protection plan to meet the expanding needs of Tyler. The plan was created in response to findings from a consultant that indicated that the City of Tyler Fire Department should have 10 fire companies (who perform basic firefighting functions), and two ladder truck companies (who perform a variety of services including search and rescue and aerial water delivery operations).
“Moving Station 5 closer to the West Loop provides better spacing and coverage for a larger portion of Tyler,” said Fire Chief Tim Johnson. “The citizens of Tyler will benefit from the new station placement by having a more uniform response time.”
The new fire station was built with an expected lifespan of 50 years and was designed with future growth in mind. Currently Station 5 will house three shifts of fire companies, each including a captain, driver/engineer, and two firefighters.
“Enhancing the spacing of our stations will not only help reduce the response time of our firefighters, it also is an important factor for the Insurance Service Organization (ISO) rating for the City of Tyler,” said Johnson.
In 2010, the City of Tyler’s fire protection ISO rating was upgraded from a class three to a class two. This was based on improvements to the operations of the fire department, such as the addition of six new firefighter positions, relocation of fire station number 7 and the purchase of eight new fire engines.
“The Fire Station Number 5 relocation demonstrates the strong commitment of the Tyler City Council towards public safety,” said Council Member Darryl Bowdre. “Most of us will remember that general public safety was one of the top concerns expressed by Tyler residents during the Tyler 21 Planning process.”