Morristown Breaks Ground on New Fire Station

On the morning of Thursday, March 28th, the City of Morristown held a special groundbreaking ceremony for Morristown’s new Fire Station 3. Local officials, fire personnel, and others gathered on site in Morristown’s east side for the occasion.

Several years ago, the State of Tennessee announced their plans to widen Hwy 11E going through Hamblen County. With the existing Fire Station 3 currently located along that roadway, the City knew that it would need to make plans to relocate to a new site. City staff examined the area to determine where the best location would be for easy road access for call response times, proximity to growing developments, as well as adequate acreage. The City chose a 12 acre site along Thompson Creek Rd. and began plans for a new, updated fire facility.

The City engaged architect Sonja Shannon to complete a design for the new station. The result was a 9,755 square foot facility containing full living quarters with 4 bunk rooms, three engine bays, and study areas.

For a while, the City had been considering the construction of fire training facilities. The construction of a new station created a good opportunity to make this a reality. In addition to the fire station, the site will also include a large training classroom, that can double as an Emergency Operations Center, and a fire training tower from Fire Training Structures, LLC. The tower will contain a burn room, a reconfigurable maze, and a repelling wall, all of which will allow firefighters to get hands-on training, learning valuable life-saving skills. Previously, Morristown fire personnel had to travel several hours away for training at the State training facility. Now Morristown will be able to train their staff locally as well as offer the facilities to surrounding area fire departments.

The redesign of Thompson Creek Road and the civil design of the fire station site were performed by engineering firm Mattern & Craig. East Tennessee Turf and Landscape has been busy in recent months completing the roadway work and preparing the construction site.  In February, the City selected General Contractor, McSpadden Inc. to construct the new fire station.

Morristown Fire Chief Clark Taylor said of the new station, “This is a huge project the city has undertaken. This investment in the department is a game changer.  With not only a modern fire station, but a training center as well, this campus will serve the department well for many generations of firefighters. This investment will also aid in keeping insurance rates low for Morristown residents and businesses.  I cannot thank the city council and city staff enough for their support of the fire department. “

A unique feature that will be relocated to the new station is Morristown’s original 1893 fire bell. It will be housed in the station tower and will be operable.

Mayor Gary Chesney spoke of the new station that, “This project has been on the planning table for what seems like a long time, but that time has been well spent.  Adding a new fire hall in a better location with enough space to include training facilities is a tribute to our planners and the professional expertise to make this possible.  Our citizens win again.”