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Mayor: No urgency to replace old fire station
by Joan Durbin
January 30, 2013 03:31 PM | 1785 views | 1 1 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Roswell has $2.3 million in impact fees and $1.5 million from a bond issue passed last November to fund a new fire station to replace station No. 4.

What it doesn’t have is a place to put it.

Two city-owned sites that were floated as possible locations back in 2010 got so much push back from residents that officials transferred attention to privately owned land.

Now one of those city-owned sites, a three-acre tract adjacent to the Terramont subdivision, has been proposed for Roswell’s third community garden. The city council’s recreation and parks committee directed staff to move ahead with a plan that included parking for gardeners.

The concept will be given to the Recreation Commission for review and input.

Asked if this puts the Terramont site officially out of the running for the new fire station, Mayor Jere Wood said it is “not currently under consideration” for the public safety facility. Neither is a site at Big Creek Park, the other piece of city-owned land that had been discussed for the station.

But Wood would not say the two sites were definitively off the table.

“We’re looking for a site that works,” he said. To that end, officials have turned to scoping out private properties as contenders.

The choice is limited because there isn’t much for sale, Wood said, so staff also has looked at locations that are not on the market.

“And convincing someone to sell is not easy,” the mayor said.

Though the city identified a need to replace a deteriorating and too small station #4 on Holcomb Bridge Road east of Ga. 400 more than two years ago, “there’s not a level of urgency because we have a working fire station,” Wood said. “It’s not in danger of imminent collapse.”

The mayor said he was comfortable with the wait, although “we’re not going to drag this on for years. We hope to close this out this year.”

As for the Terramont acreage, Wood said installing a community garden there would serve a public service, which would be appropriate for municipal land.

“It would be 20 to 40 garden spaces plus parking. It would not be using the entire piece of property,” the mayor said.

Wood said recreation and parks staff was reaching out to Terramont residents to get their feedback on the concept.

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