Fire Department celebrates remodeling of two buildings

The Grand Junction Fire Department’s Color Guard marches Saturday morning at an open house and dedication ceremony for the Fire Administration building at Sixth Street and Ute Avenue.

No emergencies. Just celebration. That was the theme during Saturday’s dedication ceremony to mark the completion of Grand Junction Fire Department’s Fire Administration building remodel at Sixth Street and Ute Avenue and the remodel of Fire Station No. 2 at Patterson and 28 1/4 roads.

Fire Station No. 2 is the busiest in the area.

Members of the public and elected officials joined emergency responders for what Grand Junction City Councilman Jim Doody called a “historic day,” as the multi-year project to revamp the facilities and offices of the Fire Department, Grand Junction Police Department and the 911 dispatch center was finished.

(A dedication ceremony for the Police Department offices, 911 dispatch center and remodeled Fire Station No. 1 was last year.)

Doody thanked Shaw Construction for its work that started in April 2011. He also thanked the Blythe Group & Co. for its building and interior design work on the expansive project.

Representatives from both firms gave remarks and accepted a gift from Police Chief John Camper and Fire Chief Ken Watkins: framed “before and after” images of the site. The wood frames were made from outdated — and strongly disliked — wood paneling from the old building that Camper said looked much better as frames as opposed to wall coverings.

Mayor Sam Susuras accepted the same gift on behalf of the City Council.

The ceremony also included the placing of time capsules and plaques.

“The construction of this facility serves as a foundation for our endless service and dedication to those who serve. We resolve that this building underscore the bonds between our community and the brave, unyielding spirit of the men and women who respond to each call,” read the plaque to be installed near the Fire Administration’s entrance.

Saturday’s events also included the unveiling of several new pieces of art related to the project, including three exterior sculptures.

Local artist Pat Olson’s “Remember” contains a piece of steel from the World Trade Center placed between acrylic representations of the Twin Towers. A commemoration ceremony for that new piece is planned at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12, in front of the Fire Administration Building. The art will be illuminated nightly.


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