“There’s just finishing of some last minute things, and it needs a good cleaning, of course,” he says. “The paving is really where it’s at the moment, so I think DGS [Astro Paving] has got it in their mind that they’re going to pave at the end of the month and that’s going to be probably one of the last items.”
There’s still a bit of painting touch-ups to be done, but that and some other deficiencies that are found won’t affect the move in date, and can be done after the fact.
The sunny fall weather FortSt. John has been experiencing, and is forecast for at least the next week, has been appreciated, as bad weather last year greatly attributed to the delay in finishing the building. Construction on the new fire hall began in September 2011, and it was anticipated that it would be ready by spring of summer this year, but a snowy winter and rainy spring pushed the move-in date to this fall.
All that’s left is to set the official move-in day, which is expected to run fairly smoothly.
“Moving into the fire hall itself is pretty much drive the trucks down to the new hall, throw your boxes in the back, and you can keep going and getting stuff out of the fire hall for as long as it takes you, so moving will go very quickly,” says Rogers.
He adds that the extra room will also make it easier. The most important factor the day of the move is coordinating radios, so that should there be an emergency, the fire department is still prepared to respond when dispatched.
The only aspect of the new fire hall that likely won’t be completed this year is the landscaping, as the good weather will soon be running out.
“It would be throwing money away, basically,” admits Rogers, “so we’ve got a plan about how we’re going to deal with that for the winter and the spring and use our City Grounds Manager to assist in getting something in place that’s going to do the deal.”
As of September 9, the projected final budget for the project was estimated at $12,733,029. The original budget was set for $10.5 million, but an additional $1.4 million came from budget shortfalls for construction and project contingencies, project management, and site servicing, as well as $350,000 for other initiatives like geo-thermal and City owned fibre connectivity.