March 7, 2014
Staunton City Council has given its official okay to build a new fire station near two city schools.
At Thursday's meeting, council voted 6-0 to approve a special use permit that allows the station to be built on residential property.
The vote came after a brief public hearing, during which two citizens voiced concern with proposed location - near Shelburne Middle School and Ware Elementary School on Grubert Ave.
But council member Dickie Bell, who has also questioned that location, told them they should have spoken up earlier.
"Come January it'll be four years since this was proposed," Bell said. "There has been debate, there has been all kinds of consideration, and for the most, public input was absent."
The fire station still has one more hurdle to clear. The Staunton School Board must still sell the land back to the city. But they're expected to make that move at their October meeting.
City Fire Chief Mike Myers said Thursday that he expects work to begin on the new fire station next spring.
He says it will cut response time to the city's west end in half.