Barrie Construction Report staff writer
Two new paramedic stations worth $3.3 million will be constructed in Simcoe County beginning this summer to support emergency response operations.
The first five-bay, $2.1 million station, slated for Allison, will house existing crews. The 5,800 sq. ft. station has been designed for future growth through a design allowing for an additional bay. This will replace a station currently leased and located further west.
The second station, located in Beeton, is a smaller $1.2 million 3,000 sq. ft., with two bays for a local response crew. The design also provides for another bay if needed.
Funding for both projects will be provided via a local tax levy for county municipalities and development charge funding for the growth elements.The stations have been designed by architect Rob Knight at Ted Handy and Associates Inc.They have staff-oriented features including parking, locker rooms, vehicle and equipment cleaning facilities, medical supply storage, security systems, ready and reporting rooms and kitchenette. The design template will also serve future locations.
“The establishment of both these facilities is in alignment with the strategic facility plan for paramedic services,” said Andrew Robert, Simcoe County’s paramedic services director and chief. “The plan evaluates current and expected call demand based on historical and current data, approved growth plans and demographic information.”
He says the aim is to provide the right capacity in appropriate locations to provide better operational performance, reducing overall emergency response time. Moving away from leased facilities in the long term will provide greater financial performance. Additional savings will be achieved through designed energy performance improvements. “We will be using radiant floor systems to minimize the requirement on HVAC equipment and provide better user comfort,” he said. “High level glazing will provide natural daylight and minimize requirements for interior lighting.”
In addition LED lighting and materials from sustainable sources will be used.
A key component of the design is a CLT (cross laminated timber) roof structure over a portion of the building. “This is wood taken from sustained forest areas and laminated together to form a roof structure,” Robert said. “These areas will remain as open ceilings partially to minimize costs as well as to expose the natural wood finish.”
Back-up emergency power is provided through a natural gas generator with an additional set up for a portable generator in the unlikely event that the first generator is not functioning.
Robert says the team is hoping to have the facility envelopes closed before winter with interior work completed during the colder months to allow for spring operation.