Golden Shovels

Members of the Scioto Township Fire Department, Scioto Township Trustees and the architect celebrated the groundbreaking on the new facility Wednesday morning. The project is on pace to be completed around the end of October 2022.

CIRCLEVILLE— Scioto Township has broken ground on its next fire station, which is located at 440 Walker Road in Commercial Point.

The new facility is a five-bay, approximately 14,000 square foot, station. There will be a community room also in the new building. Foundation should be laid later this year with materials arriving in February and the project should be completed around the end of October 2022.

Jason Funderburg, the architect and construction administrative manager on the project, said they’re already about a month and a half ahead of schedule.

“We’re waiting on the supplies at this point,” he said. “Foundations, we’ll start right after Thanksgiving and then get some of the slab work done. The building itself is not scheduled to arrive until February, so it may sit dormant until then. By the end of next year, the building will be completed.

Once the materials hit the ground in about a month and a half, people will start to see the building take shape,” he said. “End of summer, we’ll look at some of the concrete work, sidewalks and paving.”

Funderburg said his firm, WDC Group, met with the various stakeholders in the project to take input on the design.

“We go over every single thing with the design, what they want with it,” he said. “Every entity has a little bit different idea of what they want and this township had need for sleeping quarters, not all of them do, so we worked off what they needed and wanted.”

Chief Neil Cline, who has been a resident of the township for almost 20 years, said it was very exciting that the project was coming to fruition.

“I’ve seen this place explode with growth,” Cline said of Commercial Point and the township. “When I started my first day, I saw a building that was 50 years old, the roof was falling in and we’d outgrown as a department.”

Cline said they needed a place for the men and women of the department to work and sometimes live for 24 hours every three days.

“We want something that is comfortable and safe for them,” he said.

John Maynard, Scioto Township Trustee, said it’s an exciting project to have underway.

“We’ve been using an outdated service building on Harsh Alley and the community is growing the need for the services that are growing and we went ahead and got the levy passed,” he said. “This means better service to our community and the traveling public.

This is a building we’ll be able to use for the foreseeable future; 30 to 40 years at least,” Maynard said.

Cline said the new building includes space for the department to grow.

“We’ll have five drive-thru bays that are over 70 feet long each, which eliminates backing up into the building, something that’s a danger with that big of an apparatus,” he said. “The building is about three times larger than the building we’re in now.

We built this with the intention to have room to grow,” Cline added. “Down the road, in probably five to six years, we’re going to have to add a ladder truck. We have that capacity, whether we add it or not. We have extra bunks if we also need to increase staff. Everything was built with that in mind.”

Cline said it means a lot to the department to have the financial support of the community on the levy.

“This community went a long time without passing a levy and they have now entrusted us to do the right thing for this community,” he said.

“With the amount of houses coming into the community, we’ve had to increase staff due to the increased amount of runs. As such, two of our people had to stay in bunk beds because we ran out of room.

We thank the community for supporting us, everything we do, we get support,” he said.

As far as the current station, Maynard said they’re still figuring that out.

“We’ll see what our needs are, what the community needs are and go from there,” Maynard said.

Ron John, Scioto Township Trustee, said the architect’s idea is to go after financing from the U.S. Department of Agriculture at 1.9 percent.

“We were fortunate enough to get financing from them and it’ll help maximize our money and keep us from going back to the public,” John said.

“The 1.9 percent interest is good and will make our money go farther and serve the community better. We want to be good stewards with our tax money and be responsible with it.”

Funderburg said it was exciting to work on a project that means so much to the community.

“When you’re working for a township, it’s a different type of project and it’s a lot more fulfilling,” he said.

“The trustees and the firemen are very appreciative of what new facilities they’re getting. There will be a grand difference from what they have now to what they’ll get to use. It’s great to see that progression and dedication day will be a fun day.”

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