NORTHFIELD — Village officials are working on a project to expand and renovate the fire station on state Route 8 near Summit Plaza.

Council has authorized Mayor Jesse Nehez to enter into an agreement with Baker Bednar Snyder & Associates of Warren for architectural and project consulting and administrative services.

Law Director Brad Bryan said the architectural firm will be paid 9% of what the addition and renovations would end up costing.

Fire Chief Jason Buss has advocated for several years for expanding the fire station, which was built in 2003.

“We had no full-time firefighters back then, but now have a full-time staff,” he said. “We have inadequate living quarters, no sprinklers and only one exit, the bays are short and we need space to park more equipment inside.”

He said the dorms are located in the attic with no air conditioning, and a ladder truck will be needed if MGM Northfield Park eventually builds a hotel.

Buss added there is little privacy at the station. The department employs both men and women, and there is no bathroom or showers in the dorm, and firefighters must use the restroom downstairs.

He said village officials are looking at an addition of about 5,000 square feet, which could cost $1.8 million. Funding could come from the city’s budget, Tax Increment Financing the village receives from MGM Northfield Park, or a bond issue.

The money the village receive from MGM Northfield Park is required under state law to be used for public infrastructure projects connected in some way with the Route 8 entertainment facility, and the fire department qualifies.

Buss said village officials hope the architectural drawings can be completed by later this year so the project can go out for bids in January 2020. He added it would take nine to 12 months to finish the project.

 

Reporter Ken Lahmers can be reached at 330-541-9400, ext. 4189 or klahmers@recordpub.com.