Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

A space needs study completed by an architectural firm having extensive experience with fire stations indicates a need for an addition to the Clarendon Hills station, 316 Park Ave.

FGM Architects, which did the $6,150 study and has designed more than 200 fire stations, provided preliminary cost estimates for three options: building a one-story addition to the existing structure at a cost of $1.6 million, not including the cost of land acquisition of an adjacent bank parking lot; a two-story addition priced at $3.6 million; and building a new facility on a different site for $6 million.

The existing facility, built in 1962, has 6,354 square feet; an addition of 4,405 is recommended, an increase of about 70 percent.

Fire Chief Brian Leahy said a single-story addition is preferred. ¬†“The two-story addition, while not requiring land acquisition, is not preferred because it will involve putting in two stairways plus an elevator and raises certain safety concerns for fire personnel,” Leahy said.

“Some of the safety concerns identified by fire station designers include the prevention of injuries while firefighters are rushing down stairways when responding to emergency calls,” he said.

The study states that the department’s administration has outgrown the capacity of the facility. All of the offices are undersized, including one that personnel from several different areas share.¬†The growth of the department has warranted the need for a separate office for training, fire prevention, emergency medical services and the deputy chief functions, the study states.

Other needed expansions and additions, according to the study, include the lobby and radio area, a 10-person conference room for larger meetings, additional bunk room space for potential future expansion or growth in storage needs, a separate entry to the bunk room, a fitness room and increasing the training/meeting room to its original size, allowing for a capacity of 35 to 40 people. The training room has a current capacity of 21.



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