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One of the last views of the old Indian Neck/Pine Orchard Co. 9 firehouse at 6 Linden Avenue, shortly after construction fencing went up at the project site on April 12. Pam Johnson/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
During construction, Co. 9 will respond to alarms from nearby Block Island Road in Indian Neck. Here, Engine 9 can be seen on the secure property at Branford's Water Pollution Control Facility, 75 Block Island Road. Pam Johnson/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
Designed by Silver Petrucelli + Associates, Inc. (Hamden), the new Co. 9 firehouse will have two bays (the former firehouse had just one). The two-story, nearly 5,000 square foot building will be constructed with a raised foundation as part of it's storm resiliency construction. Image: Silver Petrucelli + Associates )
The back and side of the new fire house (as seen from Cocheco Ave.) designed by Silver Petrucelli + Associates. Image: Silver Petrucelli + Associates. )
Abatement and remediation began this week; once complete, the structure will be torn down. The tear-down is expected to take place later this month. Pam Johnson/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
The $1.675 million project will be partially funded by a a $500,000 STEAP state grant. Pam Johnson/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
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Remediation and abatement now underway will soon be followed by the complete tear-down of Indian Neck/Pine Orchard Fire Co. 9's firehouse, making way for ground-up construction of a new, larger firehouse at 6 Linden Avenue. In the interim, volunteer Co. 9 will keep its apparatus at a secure site on nearby Block Island Road, responding to calls from there.
With the start of abatement work on April 18, the project is now on schedule and expected to be "buttoned up" by December, 2019, Branford Fire Chief Thomas Mahoney told Zip06/The Sound.
"We're underway, we're moving forward," said Mahoney. "You should start seeing a lot more visible progress over the next month."
Meanwhile, Co. 9's on-call volunteers will respond to emergencies in Indian Neck, Pine Orchard and Pawson Park from a temporary site on nearby Block Island Road; where Co. 9's apparatus will be kept. The apparatus will be kept in a secure area at Branford's Water Pollution Control Facility, 75 Block Island Road in Indian Neck; following a check-up at Branford Fire Headquarters, said Mahoney.
"Temporarily, they've been at headquarters for the last week," noted Mahoney, speaking to Zip06/The Sound on April 17. "We needed to do some repairs and hose testing to the apparatus anyways, so that kind of worked out for us."
The company's apparatus is Engine 9 and Tac-6, a fire-response truck.
"They're going to be relocated to Block Island Road at the sewage treatment plant; behind the locked facility there -- each member has been given access," said Mahoney. "They'll be running out of there until a little bit later in the season, [when] they will be potentially relocated to Bruce & Johnson's Marina."
The marina abuts the treatment plant's property on Block Island Road. Final details are still being worked out for Co. 9's potential use of space at the marina, including the possible use of a storage warehouse, said Mahoney.
"At this time, all of the boats are still out of the water on the property; and being readied to be put in the water. We can't move into one of the buildings until that is done," said Mahoney.
For now, having Engine 9 parked outside, together with Tac-6, shouldn't be an issue, as the area is coming into warmer weather; so freezing temperatures shouldn't be a concern, said Mahoney. The treatment plant is also providing electrical service for Co. 9 use.
Headed up by Captain Mike Mullen, Co. 9 is one of five volunteer companies in town, all of which operate under Branford Fire Department. The Town's career professional firefighters (Local 2533) are based at Branford Fire Headquarters (45 North Main St.). Volunteer firefighters are on call and turn out at each of their company's locations when an alarm comes in. Branford's other volunteer companies include Stony Creek Fire-Rescue Co. 5; M. P. Rice Hose Co. 2 (341 Main Street), Short Beach Hose Hook & Ladder Co. 4; and Rescue Squad 1, which volunteers out of Branford Fire Headquarters.
The Indian Neck/Pine Orchard Co. 9 Firehouse Project
The Town's Co. 9 firehouse construction project was originally on track to begin in April 2018, but experienced a delay while final regulatory issues were ironed out, together with some final requirements for the project to comply with its $500,000 Small Town Economic Assistance (STEAP) grant, said Mahoney.
In February, 2019, the Representative Town Meeting approved spending an additional $175,000 for project, including $90,000 placed in contingency; bringing the cost up to $1.675 million; with $500,000 of the cost be covered by the STEAP grant, which was approved in 2016.
Designed by Silver Petrucelli+ Associates, Inc. (Hamden), the new Co. 9 firehouse exterior takes some cues from the original firehouse, which was built as a two-story residence in 1911 (when converted to firehouse use, a single garage bay was added). The new, enlarged firehouse (total floor space just under 5,000 square feet) will have two garage bays facing Linden Avenue. Parking will be increased to 13 spaces, including nine in a new employee lot entered by Cocheco Ave. (the lot replaces a grassy field). Public parking is not allowed at the firehouse. The side of the new building, and some areas of the new parking lot, will include some new landscaping/plantings and low impact outdoor lighting.
The new firehouse is also designed to be in compliance with federal standards for storm resiliency. Located in close proximity to Sybil Creek, which floods onto Linden Avenue during extreme weather/high tide events, the building will have a raised concrete foundation base with "flood gate" pass-throughs.
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The winter issue of Connecticut Family Magazine has arrived!