Kennewick, Richland to share plan for fire stations

By Sara Schilling, Tri-City HeraldSeptember 17, 2013 

The cities of Richland and Kennewick each have plans to build a new fire station, and they'll work together on a shared design as a way to maximize efficiency and save money.

The plan also could be used as a foundation for other fire station projects in the Tri-Cities in the future.

The Richland City Council on Tuesday night authorized the city manager to sign and execute an agreement, in partnership with the city of Kennewick, for planning and design work by Seattle-based TCA Architecture. The Kennewick council also signed off on the pact during its meeting Tuesday.

TCA Architecture's work is to include developing a prototype fire station design manual and schematic drawings, with firefighters and other experts and stakeholders in both cities providing input.

Each city will pay about $32,600 -- much less than if they'd sought the work on their own, said Richland Fire Chief Grant Baynes.

His city has land for a new fire station in the City View Drive-Duportail area. The project tentatively is included in the 2014 budget, which will be finalized through a public process later this year.

If the project ultimately makes the cut, the new station -- the fourth in Richland -- could open in 2015. It would benefit residents in the city and beyond, Baynes said.

It would "serve an area that's grown sufficiently to warrant it. By doing that, it reduces the draw down on the other stations. It improves the response times throughout the city and the entire community," he said.

Kennewick officials want to build a new fire station in their city on West 10th Avenue.

The city has some of the land it needs and is looking to buy more.

Evelyn Lusignan, a city spokeswoman, described the design agreement with Richland as "a great partnership opportunity."

Also Tuesday:

w The Richland council approved a resolution establishing a pricing list -- to be revisited every two years -- for city-owned surplus properties in the Queensgate area, Horn Rapids Business Center, Horn Rapids Industrial Park and Horn Rapids Commercial Plaza.

w The council signed off on a resolution outlining the city's position on state transportation system funding and policies. The resolution notes that Richland, Pasco and Kennewick have planned transportation projects "that are critically important to the regional transportation system and economy," including a new Duportail Street bridge, and says they should be funded if the state chooses to raise more revenue.

Similar resolutions also were headed to the Pasco and Kennewick councils this week.

w The council authorized the city manager to sign and execute a two-year lease agreement with Chin Han, for the coffee space within in the Richland Library.

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