City approves design contract for fire station upgrades
Commissioners unanimously approved a $248,000 contract for design upgrades at all Great Falls Fire Rescue stations.
City staff have been working with Cushing Terrell to review the current conditions and future needs of the four fire stations.
GFFR identified the need to update the HVAC systems, dormitory and gym areas at all four stations.
The upgrades are needed to support social distancing protocols and update aging infrastructure, according to GFFR.
Staff is recommending approval of the contract with Cushing Terrell so construction can begin in the spring or summer.
The project will be funded with American Rescue Plan Act funds and was identified as a top tier project for the city’s allocation of the federal COVID funds.
The design will include the necessary architectural, mechanical, and electrical construction documents to enable bidding by a qualified contractor, according to the staff report.
During a November work session, staff told commissioners they expect they can complete the project at all four stations within a year from contract award.
GFFR Chief Jeremy Jones, said during the November meeting that, “our systems are failing.”
Jones told commissioners they don’t have heat in some areas of the stations.
“This is not a nicety, this is a matter of if you want to keep your four current fire stations” operational before we decide on anything else in the future, Jones said during the November meeting. “We’re having failures everywhere.”
Construction estimates for the project have not yet been established.
Sylvia Tarman, the city’s ARPA project manager, said staff has been clear with the design professionals that the ARPA funds come with timelines.
She told commissioners that they’ve been seeing long lead times with HVAC equipment and it’s a concern staff has been voicing.