Warwick, RI – Mayor Scott Avedisian, Councilors Steve Merolla and Joseph Gallucci joined the architects and contractor for the planned Potowomut Fire Station for a ground breaking ceremony before a group of about 20 people Wednesday morning.
The Warwick City Council approved the $2.8 million project during its Oct. 20 meeting.
“This new fire station will contribute to the Warwick Fire Department’s long-standing tradition of public service, which is unparalleled,” Avedisian said.
The mayor said the new station, expected to be finished by fall of 2015, will allow the fire department to serve the residents of both Potowomut and Bay Ridge, in an equitable and meaningful way.
Avedisian lauded the work of architects Saccocio & Associates in designing the building, which will include, in addition to a community center, a police substation, “Where residents can come to talk to police with concerns,” he said.
Avedisian also praised the work of Warwick Fire Chief Edmund Armstrong, who has made the Potowomut Fire Station project one of his top priorities.
The mayor also praised the work of the contractor, local construction company Alhborg Construction Corp. of Warwick.
Councilman Steve Merolla said on Oct. 20 that he estimated Warwick is spending $300,000 a year to pay East Greenwich Fire Department to cover the Potowomut area.
With its own fire station in place to relieve that expense, “This station is going to be paid off in just a few years,” Merolla said.
Mark Saccocio, principal of Saccocio Associates, said the old Potowomut School on the site was demolished about eight months ago. He said the Potowomut portion of the school’s sign has been kept and will be part of the Potowomut Fire Station sign on the front of the building.
“It’s just great for the whole community,” said Glenn Ahlborg of director of project development and construction at Ahlborg Construction. Ahlborg’s father lives in the area, he said, where he knows a local fire department will make residents feel more at ease.
“I think there will be an increased sense of safety in sense of response time,” Ahlborg said.
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