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Troup County Fire Dept. getting new administrative building, renovated station

A new administration building and a renovated Station 12 are on the horizon for the Troup County Fire Department, according to information released Tuesday.

The Troup County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to approve 2WR of Georgia Inc. to be the architect of the Troup County Fire Department Administration Building during its regular meeting. The entire project is expected to be complete by May 2019 and will take advantage of an existing structure owned by the county.

“[This is an agreement] to move forward on the remodeling of the old Georgia State Patrol office and make it into Troup County Fire Administrative Complex,” Assistant County Manager Eric Mosley said. “We were very excited that building is still usable, and we can take advantage of the usable space and remodel it versus building something new. I think we are going to see a large savings. Obviously, we don’t have to purchase land or build a whole new building from scratch.”

The project will be funded through bond funds from the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax V. According to the contract, the project includes the renovation and repurposing of approximately 7,100 square feet of building space and the construction of a new 1,000 square foot classroom and covered pavilion large enough to house two full size fire trucks. The building will also include a class gathering space. Construction should begin in December.

“They have a lot of the aspects of the old building there,” Mosley said. “It is a nice old building with lots of space, lots of parking. It is very accessible to the public as well to other fire services and our fire services.”

Meanwhile, the TCFD’s Station 12 will undergo renovations, and during those renovations, the station will temporarily become a volunteer station.

“Fire Station 12 is the next fire station to be remodeled,” said Troup County Fire Chief Dennis Knight. “It is the one located on Hamilton Road between LaGrange and Pine Mountain, and what we would like to do is temporarily beginning Sept. 1 is reassign the volunteer firefighters to operate out of Station 12. The Rosemont volunteers can help cover that area, and we would also allow any of our paid staff who live in that area to be authorized to answer calls off duty.”

Knight said that starting Sept. 3, eight rookies and an instructor will take part in a rookie school, which will leave the fire department temporarily short staffed. He said that the temporary volunteer station status would solve the staffing concern and make it easier to work around construction.

“At the completion of rookie school, we can reassign the career staff back to that station,” Knight said. “It is also much easier and much quicker to do the remodel if we can move them out. We tried remodeling while they occupied the station at Abbotsford and Hillcrest, and it causes a lot of problems trying to remodel a building with people living in it.”

Knight said he expects the construction to last 8 weeks. Commissioner Morris Jones asked if fire department coverage will be impacted by the change, and Knight said it would remain a full coverage fire station. After station 12 is remodeled, station 1 will be the only career station left that needs to be remodeled. Renovations on the volunteer fire stations will begin after all Troup County Fire Stations staffed by career fire fighters have been renovated.

The renovations to Troup County Fire Station 12 did not require a vote by the commission.

The Troup County Board of Commissioners will meet again on Tuesday, Aug. 30 at 9 a.m. at 100 Ridley Avenue.