The community marveled at the new $4 million main fire station of the Cortez Fire Protection District during a packed open house Oct. 12.
The modern, two-story red brick building at 31 N. Washington St. features larger bays, training areas, six bunk rooms for the night shift, an exercise room, kitchen and dining area, conference rooms, administration offices and upgraded dispatch technology.
“The crew is very excited and proud of our new facility,” firefighter Gabriel Rogers said during a tour. “The in-house training areas and larger bays for our fire and rescue trucks are really nice.”
Bays have modern venting systems, including hoses that connect to fire trucks to direct exhaust outdoors. Classrooms will be used by firefighters and for public CPR courses. There is ample storage for firefighter equipment.
Kids explored the new station in awe, and tours of the station were given by district board members, firefighters and fire Chief Jay Balfour.
“It was a great turnout,” he said. “The new station is fantastic and allows us to better serve the public.”
The project was funded in part by a $2 million grant from the Department of Local Affairs. The fire district provided a $1 million match and borrowed $1 million for the project.
The 13,400-square-foot station was designed by Pacheco Ross Architects. It was built by Weeminuche Construction Authority of the Ute Mountain Ute tribe and many local subcontractors.
“Cortez Fire Station 1 is in service,” Balfour announced over dispatch.