Construction of new Vaudreuil-Dorion fire station will begin later this summer
By John Jantak
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
The Vaudreuil-Dorion Fire Department will be getting a new upgraded fire station at the same location of the existing station on Route de Lotbinière which will be demolished in the next few weeks to make way for the brand new facility.
Vaudreuil-Dorion council adopted loan By-law 1773-01 during its monthly session on July 5 for the construction of a new fire station on the same spot of the existing fire station on the southeast corner of Route de Lotbinière at the intersection of Rue Chicoine.
The loan by-law was adopted in order to increase the expense and loan by an additional $8.474 million for the construction project. The total loan amount of $14.875 million will cover the construction costs evaluated at $11.5 million, professional fees, rental of a temporary barracks, demolition of the current station, related costs and contingency reserves. The city expects to receive up to $4.5 million in financial assistance for the project.
The opening of tenders for the fire station project took place June 28. The three tenders received confirmed that the estimated cost during the adoption of By-law 1773 does not reflect the actual cost of the work.
IMAGE COURTESY VILLE DE VAUDREUIL-DORION
The architectural rendering of the Town of Vaudreuil-Dorion’s new fire station which will also serve the neighbouring community of Pointe-des-Cascades.
Current fire station obsolete
“The Lotbinière fire station has long ceased to meet our fire safety service requirements,” said Mayor Guy Pilon. “Our firefighters are now on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year in addition to providing first-responder services. This constant presence requires us to have an adequate response time which makes a big difference during interventions.
“As has been observed for the majority of building construction projects, the cost of materials has increased dramatically in recent months. Council chose to go ahead with this project despite the increase in costs because we are talking about an infrastructure which allows us to keep our citizens safe. In order to mitigate the tax impact on our citizens, council agreed to extend the repayment period of the loan to 30 years,” added Pilon.
The mayor noted the three tenders received confirmed the estimated cost during the original adoption of By-law 1773 did not reflect the actual cost of the work. Construction of the new fire station is scheduled to begin in late summer after the loan by-law has been approved by the provincial Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing and the contract has been awarded.
Originally built in the mid-1960s
The current fire station on Route de Lotbinière was built in 1966 and was originally used by a private company for the distribution of beer. Some improvements were made to the structure after it was acquired by the city in 1990 but problems were detected by the end of the ‘90s.
In 2018, experts assessed options to renovate and expand the current barracks or to build a new one. It was determined that because of the original building’s configuration and degree of combustibility it would be best to proceed with a new structure. Most of the fire trucks are located in another nearby building and the emergency personnel are residing in a rented house all close to the original fire station.
Pilon also noted there will not be any impact on personal property taxes for the next three years. “By then we should have more taxpayers from our industrial, commercial, and residential tax base which will help to offset the cost each taxpayer will have to contribute,” Pilon told The Journal.
Two main fire stations
The Lotbinière barracks will become the second main fire station to cover Vaudreuil-Dorion’s urban territory. The new building will meet the latest design standards and will accommodate firefighters on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week primarily in the south sector of the city.
Its location in the Dorion sector will also enable personnel to answer emergency calls in neighbouring Pointe-des-Cascades as part of a mutual aid agreement the town signed with Vaudreuil-Dorion in 2020. Vaudreuil-Dorion already provides emergency mutual aid services to Vaudreuil-sur-l