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Published: Tuesday, 9/8/2009

Bedford Township fire station work almost, on schedule

BY MARK REITER
BLADE STAFF WRITER

TEMPERANCE - So far, so good for the nearly $1 million renovation and expansion of the Lewis Avenue Fire Station in Bedford Township.

With the exception in the delay of getting concrete blocks and other materials at the construction site, the project is running nearly on schedule and it should be ready for new trucks, equipment, and firefighters on Nov. 15, David Wehner, the building site construction manager, said.

The township, which is acting as general contractor, began work in July to nearly double the size of the fire station, which at one time was an auto dealership.

The building at 7016 Lewis houses the fire administration offices, a fire truck, and an emergency medical service vehicle.

When completed, the fire station will have a 4,900-foot addition to the 2,700-square-foot fire station, including double-door garage bays that will allow the department to house a 75-ladder aerial truck and first-responder vehicle.

"This will allow us to expand the services that we have been delivering. We had been running a 30-year-plus engine truck out of there. That is all we could fit," Chief John Bofia said.

In addition to the garage bays, a section is being added that will house bathrooms, training and conference rooms, and a room for expansion that could become a dormitory in the event the department goes to full-time status.

The township board in June awarded more than $996,000 in bids to 13 subcontractors for construction work ranging from foundation and plumbing to electrical and roofing.

"Bids came in very good," Mr. Wehner said. "We had a fair number of bids."

Last week, township officials revised the building budget to reflect about $3,000 in extra work for excavation and underground utilities and $5,000 less for roofing, putting the costs about $2,000 below the preconstruction estimates.

The township initially had priced construction costs at about $1.3 million.

Mr. Wehner, of the Maumee-based Mannik & Smith Group Inc., said any time lost because of the delay in getting materials on the site will likely be gained during later phases of the project.

"We are trying to keep everybody moving and get this wrapped up for the fire department," he said. "We are setting up a for a faster pace on the project."

Mr. Wehner, who was the owners' representative for the construction of the township government center on Jackman Road, is being paid $93,000 to manage operations at the fire department construction site.

The township is using money that had been set aside annually from the fire department 1-mill levy and $360,000 that was obtained from the sale of property across the street.

The township purchased the property, land, and the clubhouse at a former golf course with the intentions of locating the fire station there.

However, the township shelved plans to locate the third fire station there because of development costs.



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