The Lehighton Ambulance Association's new garage and headquarters in Summit Hill is nearing completion and occupancy could occur within a few weeks.

The new garage is being constructed on the corner of East Ludlow and Elm Street in the borough.

Groundbreaking for the structure occurred in September.

Joni Gestl, administrative coordinator for the Ambulance Association, said the single-story structure will contain two bays, a kitchen, and a locker room.

The Ambulance Association is the main ambulance service for Summit Hill residents, as designated by the borough council. It presently occupies a rented garage along East Amidon Street next to the Switchback Mini Market.

During the groundbreaking, Gestl pointed out that the Ambulance Association became the full-time service provider in the community in 2006.

The land for the new building was purchased on Nov. 17, 2010.

The architect for the project was Carbon Engineering of Summit Hll.

The Ambulance Association presently has garages in three municipalities – Summit Hill, Penn Forest Township and the main headquarters in Lehighton.

The Association has a full-time staff of 28 people, a per diem staff of 30, and 20 volunteers.

Members of the board of directors of the Ambulance Association are Sandra Miller, Bonnie Bergstresser, Mike Hoernle, Allen Goodhile, Roger Meckes, Holly Rivera, Michael Smith, Michael Flynn, Michael Yeastedt, Carol Lilly, Thomas Lager, and Jean Sherry.

Gestl said that in 2010, the Ambulance Association responded to a total of 7,196 calls.

The Ambulance Association is an ALS (Advanced Life Support or paramedic) unit, a BLS (basic life support or EMT) service, and transport service.