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Fire Board approves contract for fire station expansion

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Fire Board approves contract for fire station expansion

The Rio Verde Fire District Board has approved a contract with TSG Contractors out of Phoenix for new construction at the Rio Verde Fire Station. TSG was the low bidder of sever contractors for the project. Their bid was $477,000, which was higher than anticipated based on architect’s estimates. Commissioner George Katterman, who is monitoring the project for the board, said he was taken by surprise by the amount of the bids. However, he attributes that in part to the amount of site work required due to drainage and soil issues, as well as an engineer’s recommendation for reinforced concrete and enhanced base preparation on the site. “TSG is a viable bidder, with a good track record and the bonding capacity we require,” Katterman said. District Fire Chief Gary Bradbury told the board he had done follow up on the background for TSG. He said it was not a company he was familiar with, but he received excellent comments and references

from others who had used the company. Virtually all said they would hire them again. The references included the Laughlin/Bullhead City Airport, Paradise Valley for two fire stations, Desert Mountain High School and the Stellar Business Park in Chandler. Bradbury also reported the company had a clean record with the Registrar of Contractors, an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau with no complaints in the last three years, and also an A+ insurance carrier rating. A key objective of the fire station renovation and expansion is to create space for the Rural/Metro ambulance and crew that moved in this past summer. That requires the addition of sleeping quarters for one Rural/Metro employee who is manning the ambulance with one of the existing district personnel.

Plans also call for the addition of a 2,000-squarefoot building. Bradbury has outlined for the board the need to have additional storage space and a bay to park the district’s wildland fire engine. That engine currently is parked outside, which Bradbury calls unacceptable for a $300,000 piece of equipment. The proposed building is detached from the existing facility. It will have an upper level. Bradbury said storage is always a critical challenge for fire departments. He had previously told the board there are items stored in proximity to the fire station living quarters that should not be there. The project calls for an exhaust ventilation system to remove diesel fumes. Both OSHA and the NFPA call for firefighter turnout gear to be stored away from the diesel exhaust that comes from trucks parked in the station bays. The new expansion also provides new storage space for this gear. Bradbury is also asking that laundering equipment for the turnouts be installed. He said over the long term this would be cheaper than having to send the coats and pants out for cleaning. There would also be additional storage for supplies and equipment and a maintenance/workshop area in the new addition. A third component of the project is the installation of an emergency generator at the station. Several board members indicated their surprise to learn that as the only emergency facility in Rio Verde the fire station does not already have an emergency generator. The cost of the generator is about $75,000. With the project including the building construction, the tenant improvement to the existing building, the exhaust system and the generator, the board briefly discussed the possibility of eliminating any of the project’s components for savings. All board members indicated that with the money available they should move ahead with all phases. Bradbury said there are some items to go over with the contractor before construction begins, but once started the work should take 150 days.

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