The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Top Stories

May 10, 2012

Joplin council approves buying two sites for new fire stations

JOPLIN, Mo. — The Joplin City Council voted Thursday night in a special meeting to buy two pieces of property as sites on which to relocate the two fire stations destroyed by the May 22 tornado.

That decision will move Station No. 2 from 2216 S. Maiden Lane to the northeast corner of 13th Street and Schifferdecker Avenue. It will place Station No. 4, formerly at 2010 E. 15th St., at 3402 S. Hearnes Blvd., where a coin-operated laundry now stands.

Fire Chief Mitch Randles, in a presentation to the council about the proposal, said the intent in relocating the stations is to more uniformly spread out fire coverage so that more of the city is within a four-minute response time. Currently, the department’s seven stations, including one that was set up at the Joplin Regional Airport to answer calls to mobile home parks where some tornado survivors are housed, provide about 80 percent of the city with a four-minute response time. A section of the city in the northwest is more than four minutes away from a station. Relocating the stations would increase the percentage of the city that is accessible in four minutes to 90 percent, he said.

City Manager Mark Rohr asked Randles if the four-minute response time is based on getting to heart attack victims quickly because firefighters serve as first responders on medical calls. Randles said that is one reason, and that response to fires is another. He said a fire doubles in size every minute.

“When we looked at relocating the stations, it was not something we took lightly,” Randles said. “We looked at what was best for the entire city.”

He said the new locations would make response time to several new key locations in the city quicker. One site is the future Mercy Hospital, which is being built at 50th Street and Hearnes Boulevard, and another is the Joplin Athletic Complex north of Schifferdecker Park.

The city will pay $115,000 for the land at 13th Street and Schifferdecker Avenue, and $183,000 for the Hearnes Boulevard location. Randles said the city could sell the tracts where the existing stations are located. The 15th Street property might bring about $66,000, and the one on Maiden Lane from $161,000 to $300,000, he said.

The cost of building the new stations likely will range from $1.1 million to $1.4 million each, though that will vary according to the square footage selected and the bids, Randles said. He said it is likely that stations smaller than the new No. 6 at 5302 W. 32nd St. will be built in order to save money. City administrators want to use as little of the city’s money as possible to rebuild, and will try to keep the building costs close to what the city’s insurance and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will pay, he said.

Spreading out the stations so that coverage is not concentrated in the central part of the city will help the city’s insurance rating, which figures into the price of insurance.

Councilman Mike Seibert asked when the new stations would be ready to open. Randles said he hopes to start construction at the first of the year, and that the work will take 10 months to a year.

Councilman Gary Shaw asked if both stations would be built at the same time, and Randles said he would like to do it that way. He said the department is challenged to keep the firetrucks from freezing in winter in the temporary stations, even in last winter’s relatively mild weather.

Councilman Benjamin Rosenberg asked which fire company would answer calls to the area of 15th Street and Range Line Road if the 15th Street station was relocated. Randles said it would be whichever station or trucks were the closest, likely the stations on Newman Road near Range Line Road, and at 33rd Street and Texas Avenue.

The vote

EIGHT COUNCIL MEMBERS who were present voted in favor of the land purchases. One council member, Trisha Raney, was absent.

Text Only
Top Stories
  • r072414msw.jpg VIDEO: Carterville company expands to third generation

    What began as Ray “Mac” McCoy’s side job in his home 55 years ago has grown not only in square footage and reach, but in generations. This summer, a third generation took over the reins of MSW — Mac’s Specialty Woodwork — that now exceeds 90,000 square feet and creates custom furniture for chain restaurants coast to coast.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • r072314techcenter4.jpg Southeast Kansas schools, businesses get behind new technical center

    When Galena Superintendent Brian Smith looks at the millions of dollars of construction projects going on in his district, not to mention similar projects underway in Joplin, Carthage and elsewhere, he sees the need to train masons.

    July 24, 2014 4 Photos

  • Landfill opponents seek answers

    The Baxter Springs High School auditorium was filled with hundreds of Cherokee County residents Thursday night as Galena city officials answered questions and listened to comments regarding a proposed landfill at Riverton.

    July 24, 2014

  • Neosho athletes bring home silver

    For 19-year-old Dominque Dechant, it was the trip of a lifetime. She and three other athletes from Neosho traveled last month to Newark, New Jersey, as part of the Missouri Special Olympics girls basketball team.

    July 24, 2014

  • Hospital Shooting_Cast.jpg Doctor fired back at gunman in hospital attack

    A doctor grazed by gunfire from a patient who had entered his office in a suburban hospital’s psychiatric unit stopped him by returning fire with his own gun and injuring him, authorities said.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 3 To Get Ready

    Three things coming your way in Friday’s Joplin Globe.

    July 24, 2014

  • APTOPIX Vatican Pope.jpg Pope meets Sudanese woman sentenced to death

    Pope Francis met privately Thursday with a Sudanese woman who refused to recant her Christian faith in the face of a death sentence, blessing the woman as she cradled her infant daughter born just weeks ago in prison.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • Box Turtle.jpg Getting reacquainted with garden dwellers

    Visitors to my garden this week find me covered in dust and dirt with bits of wood, leaves and who knows what else caught in my hair; stinky, sweaty gloves; grimy sweat pants and rivulets of dirty perspiration running down my face.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • mug_sarah-coyne-112613-c.jpg Sarah Coyne: Older kids still find joy in toys

    When she crawled under her covers, she buried her head in her pillow. Then she looked up at me and whispered, "But what if I can't stop thinking about that spider?"

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072414_annie1.JPG Child's play: Kids comprise the cast of 'Annie Jr.'

    The kids are getting a kick out of playing adults. While most of the main characters in "Annie Jr." are orphan children, some, such as Daddy Warbucks, Miss Hannigan and President Roosevelt, are squarely past adulthood.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo