East Dundee’s New Fire Station Response Time- Post-Tribune

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Written by Erin Sauder, The Sun-Times Media. June 13, 2014


East Dundee’s new fire station location improves response time

EAST DUNDEE — A year after construction began on East Dundee’s new fire station, officials moved this past week into their new digs along Route 25.

“It’s been great,” said Fire Chief Steve Schmitendorf. “And the biggest thing we’ve noticed — which is what we thought would happen — is that our response time is much better out of this building. Especially anything in the eastern end of our district. Obviously, going back by the old station will take a little longer, but it is downhill and we don’t navigate those narrow streets anymore.”

A $5.5 million referendum approved by taxpayers in November 2012 made possible the new fire station, located near Routes 25 and 72. Fire officials said the area is more centrally located to serve their entire district, which extends as far east as Higgins Road and Interstate 90. The district serves the villages of East Dundee, South Barrington and Barrington Hills, and unincorporated Kane and Cook counties.

The move also means more room for the East Dundee Police Department, which will expand into the fire department’s old building on Third Street.

Fire officials were able to move into the new building Monday.

Schmitendorf said that for the most part, the project stayed on its projected timeline.

“We were maybe two weeks behind what we were hoping for, and that was just because of that tough winter,” he said. “Obviously, we still have some odds and ends to work on; but we can function out here now.”

The land the new fire station is built on is owned by the village. Both fire and village officials agreed to swap the land for the current fire department building. To make the exchange more equitable, since the village was receiving three acres of land with a complete building, East Dundee officials said they would donate $100,000 per year to the East Dundee Fire Protection District — a separate taxing body — for the 20-year life of the loan to build the station to offset payment of the bonds.

A community open house is planned for the fall, to coincide with Fire Prevention Week.

“We’re waiting because we want to do things in the building to spruce it up,” Schmitendorf said.

Village President Lael Miller visited the facility Friday.

“It’s incredible,” he said. “It’s a beautiful building, and I’m sure those guys will be happy in it for the next 50 to 75 years. It’s a huge asset to all the residents of East Dundee and our entire fire service district.”

As for the construction of the village hall and police station, Miller said those projects are going through the final design phase.

“We’re anticipating sometime at the end of summer or early fall we’ll start construction on the police station portion,” he said. “Last I heard, the tentative completion schedule on that is May of next year.”

Miller said work will also begin on the village hall “somewhere in parallel with that.”