Ocoee to scout District 1 locations for new Fire Station 38
Editor in Chief
Thursday, May 18, 2023
The city commission green lit the search for a permanent location for Fire Station 38, which will replace this "temporary" fire house in Vignetti Park. First responders have been there since 2020.
Updated May 19 to include reaction from Chris Atalski, president of Ocoee fire fighters union.
Ocoee’s fire fighters in District 1 are a step closer to getting a real brick-and-mortar fire station.
The city commission Tuesday approved a request for staff to scout locations to build a new home for Fire Station 38. The request came from Commissioner Scott Kennedy of District 1 and was approved by consensus. Kennedy said there are $5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds earmarked to build a new building. It will replace the double-wide trailer in Vignetti Park on Adair Road that currently houses the 12 fire fighters and fire engine of Fire Station 38.
Station 38's first responders have been in temporary digs for nearly 10 years, according to Chris Atalski, president of International Association of Fire Fighters Local 3623, Ocoee's fire fighters union. Atalski told VoxPopuli in an email that Station 38's fire fighters originally moved into a storefront at the Publix shopping center on West Road in 2013. They moved to Vignetti Park in 2020 after losing the storefront to a higher paying tenant.
District 1 residents and fire fighters have been promised a new fire station since 2017 when former Fire Chief John Miller received a Federal Emergency Management Agency grant to staff up the station with personnel and add the fire engine.
Atalski hailed the news of the search as "long overdue," and said the fire fighters have been "waiting patiently" for a permanent station. But he added, "We'll believe it when we see it."
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