Fire Station 1 Project
On this page, you will find regularly updated information about the Fire Station 1 project, including past presentations, meeting dates, construction progress, FAQs and more.
Oct. 17, 2023
– Cascade’s new Fire Station No. 1 is nearly ready! Over the next few weeks, township firefighters will be moving into this state-of-the-art facility. To celebrate completion of this project, the township is inviting the public to a grand opening and open house from 5 p.m.-7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 2,
exactly one year after the official groundbreaking.
“We are so excited to share this beautiful new building with the community,” said Cascade Township Supervisor Grace Lesperance. “This station provides our hard-working firefighters with enhanced safety, a modern alert system with message boards and monitors throughout, and dedicated training and storage spaces without asking taxpayers for additional funds.”
The event will kick off with remarks from Supervisor Lesperance, Fire Chief Adam Magers, project designer Williams Architects and project construction manager Triangle Associates. Instead of a ribbon-cutting, the celebration will feature something more meaningful to firefighters: a fire hose uncoupling. “The opening of a new fire station is an occasion most firefighters do not get to experience,” said Fire Chief Adam Magers. “The fire hose uncoupling is a symbolic way to celebrate this special moment.”
Following the uncoupling ceremony, residents, businesses and community stakeholders will be invited inside to tour the interior. Visitors will get a up-close look at the amenities such as the four-bay, “pull through” apparatus garage, 48 foot-high hose tower and high-rise training area, carcinogen exhaust capture system and decontamination areas, emergency operations center, conference rooms and more.
Nov. 2, 2022
– On Nov. 2, Fire Department staff, Township officials and project partners officially broke ground on the new Fire Station 1. Construction is slated to be completed fall 2023.
Project Timeline Update Nov. 2, 2022
- Click here
to view the updated Fire Station 1 project timeline, which includes the steps the project team has taken since the project’s inception in 2018.
Jump down to the Temporary Air Cargo Facility FAQ
, Fire Station 1 Document Archive
, or Progressive AE Pre-Project Documents
Fire Station 1 FAQs
Last Updated Oct 10, 2022
Below, you will find a list of Fire Station 1 frequently asked questions. Have a question about the project that isn’t on this list? Please email Fire Chief Adam Magers at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Why does Cascade Township need to replace Fire Station 1?
The Township conducted a facilities study in 2018, bringing in a professional architectural firm to review and evaluate all current facilities. We surveyed community members to find out how our facilities were valued, asking residents to share what programs and services they would like to see added in the coming years. The top need identified by this survey and our residents was replacing Fire Station 1, which does not meet national and firefighting safety standards.
- Can’t you simply remodel Fire Station 1?
No, it would not be practical at this point. The current building where Fire Station 1 is housed was originally an insulation factory. It has been through three extensive remodels and is at the point where it can no longer be renovated to meet safety standards.
- What steps has the Township taken since the Facilities Study determined replacing Fire Station 1 was the top priority of residents?
After the facilities study, the Township engaged a professional architectural firm to go through conceptual design, then schematic design and then design-development. A committee of firefighters worked closely with the architecture firm throughout this process, identifying current challenges that need to be addressed. Township trustees and Chief Magers have visited more than a dozen fire departments in West Michigan to review their facilities as we look to develop a new Fire Station 1 that complies with state and federal guidelines, meets or exceeds firefighting safety standards and will serve the Township for decades to come.
- How was the site selected?
The Township conducted a two-year site selection process that looked at call mapping, traffic studies, response time and other criteria, as well as lot availability and cost analysis for property in the Township. Three sites emerged as the top candidates, with the Board finally approving the Thornhills site, which best met needs.
- How have residents been engaged to date in this process?
Starting in 2018 with the Facilities Study, residents have had the opportunity to participate in nine different public engagement sessions. The Township has had 25 different touch points in various open meetings where we have sought resident input to assess what they would like to see in a new Fire Station 1. Residents have highlighted a number of issues, from response time to accessibility and community events to greater visibility.
The Township hosted an open house where residents had the opportunity to tour Fire Station 1, see the current challenges with the facility and talk with Chief Magers, Fire Department members, the architects and construction manager. The Township also produce a virtual tour of the station for residents who are unable to attend in person. Additionally, we hosted a public information session in advance of the Boards review and vote on the project.
- What future opportunities for engagement do residents have?
Residents are welcome to attend and speak at any of the Township Board meetings, which are held the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month at 7 p.m. at the Wisner Center, 2870 Jacksmith Ave. SE. Residents can also attend these meetings virtually. Residents can share their thoughts at any time with Chief Magers by emailing him at email@example.com
- What’s the timeline for this project? Where are we now and what’s happening next?
You can view the complete timeline for this project here
- If you started this process in 2018, why is it taking so long?
Fire Station 1 will be the largest capital investment project of the Township in our history. We have listened to residents, who have told us they want to be engaged along the way. We are working as quickly and deliberately as we can to ensure we meet the needs of our firefighters and our residents in a way that is fiscally responsible.
- How much will a new Fire Station 1 cost?
We anticipate the cost will be between $10.4 million and $10.9 million but the range will remain flexible baseon on unforeseen construction contingencies.
- Will there be an additional cost to taxpayers for Fire Station 1?
No. We cover the cost of construction with funds already set aside and through a bond that will be paid utilizing existing revenues. We will not need to ask taxpayers for additional dollars.
- Where can I go to learn more about this process?
We have a dedicated page
on our website where we have gathered all the information about Fire Station 1. It’s one of the sliders on our homepage and prominently featured each time you visit www.cascadetwp.com
- How can I share comments or ask questions about this process?
If residents have a question not addressed in these FAQs or a comment you wish to share, you can email Chief Magers at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Residents can also attend and speak at any of the Township meetings, which are held the second and fourth Wednesdays of every month at 7 p.m. at the Wisner Center, 2870 Jacksmith Ave. SE. Residents can also attend these meetings virtually.
Fire Station 1 Temporary Air Cargo Facility FAQs
Where is the temporary Fire Station 1?
Starting Sept. 9, 2022, Fire Station 1 staff have relocated to an air cargo facility at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport while the new station is built. Fire Station 1 staff have also established a staging area at Kent District Library – Cascade Township Branch to ensure they are readily available during peak times.
How long will Fire Station 1 staff operate out of the air cargo facility?
Fire Station 1 staff will operate out of the air cargo facility until the new station is built. According to the current timeline, construction is scheduled to be completed fall 2023. We will post updates on this page if the timeline changes.
Will it take longer for the Fire Department to respond if I call for help?
Our goal is to provide the same level of fast, efficient response to all calls. Staffing at Fire Station 2 and the temporary Fire Station 1 will not change during this time. Additionally, we have also established a staging area at Kent District Library – Cascade Township Branch, which is just around the corner from Fire Station 1, to ensure we can respond quickly to emergency calls.
Will the Fire Station 1 phone number change during the move?
No. The current non-emergency number, 616.949.1320, will not change. If you have an emergency, dial 911.
Why am I seeing so many firefighters in the community?
To ensure service remains responsive, Fire Station 1 staff is staging at the Kent District Library – Cascade Township Branch and other public areas throughout the community during peak incident times.
Can I visit the air cargo facility?
No. Since these are temporary quarters and the airport’s security measures only allow authorized personnel on-site, we are not equipped to welcome visitors. We look forward to being back in our new space in fall 2023 – and to welcoming residents and visitors at that time.
Fire Station 1 Document Archive
Fire Station 1 Update Archive
Fire Station 1 New Design Virtual Walkthrough
Feb 2022 Video Update
Jan. 19 public engagement session Slideshow
Video of Jan. 19 public engagement session
Public engagement survey results
Progressive AE Pre-project Documents
Progressive AE study with Fire Station 1 recommendations
Progressive AE survey next steps
Progressive AE Buildings and Services Study
Progressive AE needs assessment presentation