Coralville to build new fire station - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Coralville to build new fire station

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CORALVILLE (KWWL) - The Coralville City Council approved a new fire station Tuesday night that fire officials say will extinguish a burning problem.

The Coralville Fire Department says the proposed $2.6 million station will not only cut down on their response time to certain areas of town, but allow them to offer better assistance to neighboring Iowa City and North Liberty.

When Coralville firefighters are called to an emergency, they have one thing in mind: how fast they can get there.

"Responding from down here, having to go through all that traffic, getting past the Coral Ridge Mall area," said Assistant Fire Chief Orey Schwitzer, listing some of the challenges he faces trying to respond to areas north of Interstate 80.

"Simply because of the number of calls, and the growth that's happening on that side."

He says the new station being built just off Highway 965 will speed up their response time to the north part of Coralville.

City Councilor John Lundell says it will also bring financial benefits.

"This should have a very favorable impact on insurance rates of both commercial and residential properties."

Lundell says insurance rates are based on factors like water availability and proximity of emergency services.

"We have an excellent rating now, and the only thing that was holding us back from an even higher rating was this second station that will reduce our response time."

Even with a $2.6 million price tag, it seems the city isn't having a problem paying for it. Lundell attributes that to good long-range financial planning. The fire department's resources won't immediately grow with the new building, but it will allow them to spread out. Another engine may be purchased in the future, according to Schwitzer.

"Initially, we'll try and move two of the engines up there, which will free up a little room down here for us."

The new facility will have room for at least one ambulance for medical calls, and serve as a place for police to go if they need to finish a report.

Online Reporter - Brady Smith

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