More headway made on needed north fire station

Eastside Fire and Rescue continues discussion with council members.

In early September, chief Jeff Clark of Eastside Fire and Rescue (EFR) provided a presentation on the fire services offered to Issaquah and the need for a fire station in north Issaquah to meet their service obligations now and in the future.

EFR provides emergency response services to the cities of North Bend, Sammamish, Issaquah and other communities through a regional partnership. The city of Issaquah, however, is in charge of providing the physical assets including fire stations, fire vehicles and equipment.

The new Fire Station 71 would increase the capacity of EFR, as the cities in the area continue to grow. There are also needed updates at the Sunset Way location. There are newer state requirements for stations to adhere to in order to protect responders from the potential risks of cancer.

“Understand that there’s a lot of work that needs to be done with Station 71,” Clark said.

The current plan points to housing the temporary station somewhere along Eastlake Sammamish until a permanent station is built in the same location, Clark said.

However, Clark told the city council during the Sept. 3 presentation that they haven’t yet landed on a temporary solution. Potential products could be shipping container style structures that could be transported to other locations in the future and other portable models.

“How temporary a station is going to be determines how much will be put in at the front end,” Clark said.

In July 2019, the council adopted the 2020-2025 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). In the document is the anticipated costs for a permanent fire station as well as a temporary solution in the meantime, according to city documents.

The CIP anticipates costs in 2020, therefore the city council will decide if the city will fund a temporary fire station with adoption of the 2020 city budget. Ongoing discussions are happening between administration and EFR to sort through potential location options and the costs for both the temporary and permanent fire station.

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