Tours of Fire hall No. 1, pro­posed site to­day

The Prince George Citizen - - FRONT PAGE - Bar­bara GEERNAERT Cit­i­zen staff bgeer­naert@pgc­i­t­i­

Res­i­dents of Prince Ge­orge will have the op­por­tu­nity to tour Fire Hall No. 1 and the pro­posed site for a new lo­ca­tion to­day.

This comes af­ter the city un­veiled a series of pub­lic in­for­ma­tion ses­sions about Fire Hall No. 1 and the Four Sea­sons Pool lead­ing up to the com­mu­nity ref­er­en­dum on Oct. 28.

The series also in­cludes dig­i­tal town hall-style meet­ings on­line and in pub­lic and will in­clude the city’s reg­u­lar neigh­bour­hood con­ver­sa­tions known as “Talk­to­ber.”

The first dig­i­tal town hall meet­ing will take place on Tues­day.

“Pub­lic en­gage­ment is one of the top pri­or­i­ties of this coun­cil,” says Mayor Lyn Hall.

“Res­i­dents can look for­ward to tours of the fa­cil­i­ties, in-per­son pre­sen­ta­tions from city of­fi­cials, and ques­tion-and-an­swer ses­sions di­rectly with coun­cil and ad­min­is­tra­tion. For res­i­dents who want to en­gage on­line and via so­cial me­dia, there will be the op­por­tu­nity to par­tic­i­pate in dig­i­tal town halls on­line and via so­cial me­dia.”

A new fire hall is es­ti­mated to cost $15 mil­lion while a new pool will to­tal about $35 mil­lion.

A new pool would be lo­cated north of the cur­rent pool where the Days Inn build­ing sits now and would in­clude a ther­apy/tod­dler pool, a leisure pool with a wad­ing zone, play fea­tures and a slide.

Fire Hall No. 1, the city’s main fire hall, is to be re­lo­cated to a more cen­tral lo­ca­tion at the south cor­ner of Massey Drive and Car­ney Street.

City coun­cil re­acted af­ter re­ceiv­ing a Fire Un­der­writ­ers Sur­vey Re­port which in­di­cated that Fire Hall No. 1 is no longer able to meet cur­rent stan­dards as a fire and res­cue fa­cil­ity, emer­gency op­er­a­tions cen­tre and fire op­er­a­tions com­mu­ni­ca­tions cen­tre.

“There is a lack of space. We need a change,” Fire Chief Iver­son said. “We have max­i­mized the use of this build­ing.”

And ac­cord­ing to Iver­son, this will also ex­pand its eight-minute re­sponse zone by 50 per cent. Both projects are in­cluded in the 20172021 Fi­nan­cial Plan, which city coun­cil ap­proved ear­lier this year.

The first open house will be held at the cur­rent site of Fire Hall No. 1 to­day from 9 a.m. to noon (the cur­rent site is lo­cated at the cor­ner of Sev­enth Av­enue and Do­min­ion Street) and at the pro­posed site on Massey Drive (next to the North­ern BC YMCA) near the in­ter­sec­tion with Car­ney Street from 1 un­til 4 p.m. the same day.

City of­fi­cials will be sta­tioned at a white tent on-site.

An open house will also be held at the cur­rent site of the Four Sea­sons Leisure Pool at 775 Do­min­ion St. on Oct. 18 from 4:30 to 8 p.m.

And in an ex­tra ef­fort to get the word out, two dig­i­tal town halls will be held at city hall in the city hall coun­cil cham­bers at 6 p.m. – on Tues­day re­gard­ing Fire Hall No. 1 and on Wed­nes­day re­gard­ing the Four Sea­sons Pool, both stream­ing on Face­book Live.

Lo­ca­tions have also been de­ter­mined on the day of the ref­er­en­dum.

Elec­tion of­fi­cials plan to have the fol­low­ing eight vot­ing lo­ca­tions open on gen­eral vot­ing day on Oct. 28 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.: John McIn­nis Cen­tre, D.P. Todd sec­ondary school, Kelly Road sec­ondary school, Edge­wood el­e­men­tary school, Malaspina el­e­men­tary school, Ron Brent el­e­men­tary school, Van­way el­e­men­tary school and Black­burn el­e­men­tary school.

Ad­vance vot­ing will be avail­able at city hall on Oct. 18 and Oct. 24 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Ad­di­tional ad­vance vot­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties will be avail­able at UNBC on Oct. 18 and the Col­lege of New Cale­do­nia on Oct. 19, both from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

In ad­di­tion, mail bal­lot vot­ing will be avail­able on or about Sept. 22 and spe­cial mo­bile vot­ing will take place at se­lect health care and com­mu­nity liv­ing fa­cil­i­ties.

For more in­for­ma­tion visit: www.prince­ge­­er­en­dum.

There is a lack of space. We need a change. We have max­i­mized the use of this build­ing. — Fire Chief Iver­son

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