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Carbon planners okay construction of Lehighton fire station complex

Published April 21. 2012 09:01AM

In preparation for Lehighton's new fire station complex, Lehighton Borough recently was granted a lot line revision for five parcels along South Third Street in Lehighton by members of the Carbon County Planning Commission.

The lot line revision consolidates five lots on South Third Street to create one parcel of approximately .70 of an acre.

Carbon County Planning Commission also approved construction of a 8,665 square foot firehouse complex that will house Lehighton Fire Department.

The subdivision will be served by municipal sewage and water.

The homes on three of the lots are to be demolished and removed before construction of the firehouse complex.

The Lehighton Zoning Hearing Board approved zoning variances on May 5, 2011.

In January, the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) announced it had released $1.75 million for the construction of the fire house addition.

The project will provide an efficient and updated fire station by rehabilitating two older fire stations that are located within the same block. The three homes that are planned for demolition have already been purchased.

Lehigh Fire Company No. 1 purchased two properties next to Lehigh Fire Co. No. 1 and the third was purchased by Lehighton Fire Department.

The new fire station will decrease the response time of the Lehighton Fire Department. This infill project will allow the fire department to provide the same level of service without any interruption during the construction.

The structure will provide firefighters with a safe working environment along with amenities for full time occupancy. The new fire station will not only provide new apparatus bays but will also include many areas for training for volunteer fire fighters.

In addition to the RACP funding, the borough has allocated tax revenue toward the matching portion of the RACP grant. Lehighton taxpayers will pay an additional two mills for 12 years to serve as the needed matching grant.

Lehighton Fire Department has been working on the project since 2008. The location for the fire station is centrally located to provide rapid response to schools, hospitals and populated areas.

Firefighters currently must operate between two buildings and some very tight quarters to provide services.

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