Columbia fire hoping for $500K for largest overhaul to date

Columbia fire hoping for $500K for largest overhaul to date

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - The Columbia Fire Department is planning the largest overhaul of its stations to date if its proposed budget gets approved.

We're talking more than a half million dollars, which Chief Aubrey Jenkins says would be the biggest renovation budget for his department that he can remember.

His department surveyed all 12 of the city-owned stations. The department's other 20 stations are maintained by Richland County. They identified any need that could allow them to improve their current facilities and put off building more for the time being. That included things like replacing ceiling tiles, painting, adding new lockers for firefighters and mold remediation.

The department's Shandon station was closed due to mold earlier this year. And while station 11 off of Two Notch Road is closed for painting, they've found low levels of mold that need to be treated.

"You know, anytime you've got mold in any station it's a concern because it's a health risk," Jenkins said. "We want to make sure we're not putting our firefighters in jeopardy as far as any kind of health hazards. So certainly we'll be looking at all of our stations as we go around and do the survey that it's not an issue that mold is not an issue."

Chief Jenkins says he hopes to learn more about whether they'll get their proposed funding during the city's budget workshop which begins May 2.

And while that half million sounds like plenty, it won't cover all station related projects the department has in mind.

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