Fire station construction to resume

The Voorhees Fire District Board of Fire Commissioners said construction soon would resume on Station 662, after dismissing the original contractor for the project in August.

“The project was scheduled to be completed in June 2013, but was not,” a release provided by Voorhees Fire District Chief James Pacifico stated. “Because of that, and other problems the fire district had with the contractor, the board of fire commissioners dismissed the contractor from the project, effective Aug. 5, 2013, and demanded that the contractor’s surety complete the project.”

The release also said the fire district and the contractor’s surety, American Liberty, have reached an agreement to take over the work of the former contractor and that the project would be completed by mid to late summer of 2014.
After the construction of the new station is complete, the release stated that all members and equipment would be transferred to the new station. The current station then will be demolished to make room for the administrative wing, which will then be constructed.

“Fire department personnel and apparatus have not been changed in any way and are ready to serve the residents and businesses of Voorhees if and when called upon,” the press release stated.

According to Pacifico, the original contractor began the project in February 2012.

“There was quite a bit of hold up, but most had to deal with contractor issues,” Pacifico said.

Pacifico said plans to construct a new firehouse were approved by the board due to the age of the current station, located on Burnt Mill Road.

“The firehouse was built in 1950 and doesn’t fit today’s standards,” Pacifico said.

He went on to cite numerous problems with the building, including faulty heating and air conditioning, and the lack of sleeping quarters for firefighters, some of whom are currently sleeping on the floor. In addition, he explained the building does not meet the standards for ADA compliancy.

“It was more cost effective to take down and start new,” he said.

Pacifico added that with the new contractors on site, construction has already resumed on the new fire station.