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Substation approved for Breslau

Gradually introducing fire services in Breslau, Woolwich will spend $264,000 this year to build a temporary substation on Beacon Point Court.

The site is located in the Thomasfield Homes subdivision, and will eventually house a full fire station. For now, the operation will function as a subset of the Maryhill fire station.

Woolwich council this week approved the work, following a staff report that deemed building more cost-effective than leasing space in the village until a permanent facility is built, likely within five years. The township has pegged the cost of constructing and equipping a Breslau station at $2.8 million.

When a new facility is finally in place, the 1,000-square-foot pre-engineered building approved Tuesday night would be converted into a storage facility for the fire department and other township services, explained director of recreation and facilities Larry Devitt.

While the building itself has a price tag of only $15,000, plus another $40,000 in construction costs, most of the expenses would cover preparation of the site for its long-term use. Budgeted fees that include $50,000 for servicing and $60,000 for paving would have to be paid eventually, he noted.

“Overall costs in five years time, or whenever [the station is built], should be reduced by this amount. The site will be ready to have a fire hall dropped on it,” said Devitt in a later interview.

“It was a pretty easy decision.”

The project will be tendered shortly, with a goal of having the work completed by year’s end.

The structure would have enough room to house one truck, with space for an office and washrooms.

Operating as an offshoot of the Maryhill station, it would house one pumper, said Woolwich fire chief Rick Pedersen.

The department has been recruiting volunteers in Breslau in advance of opening a station in the village. So far, more than 20 people have shown an interest. Getting a new station in operation means training volunteers, with Maryhill providing the senior officers for the time being, he explained.

Once in place, the substation would respond to all calls requiring just one truck, with Maryhill, backed by Conestogo, responding with them to the larger calls.

In backing staff’s recommendation, Coun. Mark Bauman said he supports the incremental approach, allowing the new Breslau recruits to gain experience under the command of Maryhill.

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