With Fort Saskatchewan's booming growth over the past decade, the fire department is looking to build another station.
 
At Tuesday's (May 9) city council meeting, councillors heard from Fire Chief James Clark, who gave a progress update on the second fire hall.
 
In 2013, the fire department conducted a Fire Insurance Grade Update report, which recommended building a second fire hall to reduce response time.
 
Then—in 2015—Darkhorse Emergency Services was brought in to help pick the best site for the new fire hall.
 
"That involves several studies including using seven years of our historical data and then accessing land that was available," explained Clark. "At the end of 2016, we actually purchased the property."
 
The new fire station's land is just east of Heartland Ford on Wilshire Boulevard. 
 
"Sitting down with the planning department, looking at the road networks, we need to get trucks out when somebody's in trouble, very quickly," said Clark. "And also, believe it or not, not everyone wants a fire station in their backyard."
 
The city has now been divided into two service areas to monitor call volume. The dividing line runs just west of Highway 15 and on the south side of Highway 21, running along 92 Street.
 
Call volumes on the east side, with the existing station, had 47 per cent of all calls received whereas the zone for the new station received 53 per cent of the calls.
 
The Fort Saskatchewan station received 376 calls in 2016, just over the recommended call capacity; however, with the projected population growth, the number of calls is expected to increase significantly.
 
Over the past five years, call volume has grown by seven per cent each year. That means in 2018, call volume is anticipated to reach 430 per year, well over the 360 call volume distribution recommendation.
 
The new building would take about two years to design and build with the earliest timeline completion date in late 2019.
 
Council accepted Clark's presentation as information.