New, Larger, Healthier Main Fire Station Nearly Built - TribPapers

New, Larger, Healthier Main Fire Station Nearly Built

Workers are busy finishing the fire station and its lot. This view is from southbound North Main Street, by HHS. Photo by Pete Zamplas.

Hendersonville – The new, solar power-capable station is about twice the size of its predecessor, which was demolished. This Boyd Park site used to also contain the city-run miniature golf course. A new course is off North Main, around the corner of Five Points.

Construction of the 19,745-square-foot project began in January of 2023, a year and a half ago. “The fire department is expected to begin moving in during the month of July,” City of Hendersonville Communications Manager Allison Justus told the Tribune. A construction foreman smiled and said “maybe,” when asked about chances the station is operational next month. Of course, weather delays are a variable.

Edifice General Contractors is managing the construction of plans by ADW Architects. The project contract’s GMP cap (edifice guaranteed maximum price) is below $12.85 million.

Veteran Hendersonville City Council member Jeff Miller stated, “I’m very proud of my part in this new Fire Station 1. These men and women deserve a solid and safe building, as well as a beautiful building to welcome folks to Hendersonville.” He called the project a “great effort by staff, the HFD, Council, and a very professional construction company. It’s fabulous.”

A grand opening for the new main station is tentatively slated for Sept. 20. Operations will shift to the new station, after being part of Station 2 on Sugarloaf Road.

Four Bays

The new station has four vehicle bays with bi-folding doors. Three are full-length/pull-through apparatus bays for a long ladder truck and two fire engine trucks. A half-bay is for a smaller quick response vehicle (QRV).

As before, Station 1’s site is centralized and just north of Downtown Hendersonville. Specifically, it is on the island between busy one-way lanes of North Main Street/U.S. 25 North, by Hendersonville High School. Thus, its access is in either direction of that traffic corridor.

Once in a while, a fire truck blasted its siren and flashed lights while zooming out of the old main station by chance moments after HHS Bearcats scored a football touchdown or soccer goal. Fans remarked that it was as if the firefighters celebrated the home team’s score, though of course these were instead somber fire call responses.

More Space, Modernized

The new station’s operations far exceed those of its predecessor, which Justus noted was deemed “no longer adequate for the growing” department. It rates as ISO Class 1 exemplary in fire protection.

“The new station will house three companies and their battalion chiefs, corresponding living quarters, restrooms and shower facilities,” Justus explained. There are also “administrative offices (including for the fire marshal), life safety division offices and a fire department training room.” Female firefighters get their own restroom and showers.

Solar Power; Cleaner

Solar power is a cost-saving capability. The new station is “photovoltaic array-ready,” meaning the conduit is installed. Solar cell panels, if put in, would convert sunlight into electricity.

Other high-tech touches include fiber optic-supported internet, and enhanced security and alerting systems. Air quality will improve with better “venting apparatus exhaust,” Justus said. “Low volatile organic compound (VOC) finishes” include in paint’s volatile organic compounds, resulting in extra-low vapor content as a further health measure.

Exterior and ground improvements are also plentiful. There is new sidewalk, curb, and gutter around the site. A $70,000 state water resource grant paid for “sustainability” features such as improved groundwater and stormwater management, rainwater harvesting for irrigation, “heat island reductions and permeable paver parking areas.