New fire station can accomplish a lot for Danville

Published 1:13 pm Wednesday, May 22, 2019


The Advocate-Messenger

There’s a lot to like about the plan for Danville’s new fire station headquarters, which was released during last week’s city commission meeting.

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First and most important, it solves an urgent need for Danville’s firefighters, replacing a literally crumbling Main Street fire station. The new station is expected to provide everything the fire department could need, including space to grow, for at least 20 years. And Chief Ken Pflug says it can serve the city well beyond that, for a total of 50 years.

The station is designed to let firefighters use best practices, such as maintaining “hot” and “cold” sides, separating living areas from hazardous ones.

Danville firefighters have been making due with the current Fire Station No. 1 for years, with a garage floor that can’t support fire trucks and a back wall that’s falling away from the building, among other issues. It’s never a good thing when first responders have to make due, which is why a new facility is long overdue.

Secondly, the new station’s location maintains the current station’s benefit of being centrally located, and adds benefits by being even closer to police headquarters. The possibility exists in the future for an underground tunnel to connect fire and police for even more collaboration. The plan will also enable fire trucks to pull through the station, rather than having to block Main Street while they back in as is the case now.

Thirdly, the plan for the $7.5 million station is gorgeous. It would certainly add to Danville’s downtown appeal — which is saying a lot, since Danville already has one of Kentucky’s best-looking downtowns.

The station will make residents even more proud of their Main Street. And it will impress visitors, such as the thousands who flock to the City of Firsts every June for the Brass Band Festival; or perhaps business representatives with potential economic development projects looking for a city that catches their eye.

Beyond just looking nice, the station will contain a first responders memorial, which will feature a piece of the World Trade Center buildings that came down in the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001. Danville’s piece of the tragic chapter in American history is an approximately 13-by-13-inch chunk of iron I-beam that weighs between 50 and 60 pounds. It’s planned to be on display in the memorial, where the public can touch it.

A beautiful, useful and powerful building like this does more than provide Danville residents with top-notch emergency services. It proves the city that built it is strong, vibrant and growing. We hope the new fire station becomes a point of pride for Danville for decades to come.