ASHEBORO N.C. – The City of Asheboro has authorized an offer to purchase land on Zoo Parkway for a new Fire Station and Emergency Operations Center with construction set to start as soon as next year.
At the City Council Meeting held on November 8th, 2023, council members voted unanimously to authorize $120,000 from the city’s general fund to make an offer to purchase 3.25 acres of land on Zoo Parkway at Crestview Church Rd.
That land would be used to build a new Fire Station and Emergency Operations Center which is needed to help keep up with increasing call volume and to ensure response times stay at or under five minutes now and into the future.
Those goals are especially important to the department to maintain its current ISO 1 insurance rating, the highest possible insurance rating from the Office of the State Fire Marshal. In North Carolina, only 1.8% (or 22) of the approximately 1,200 fire departments are rated as ISO 1.
“The property meets all the criteria that was established by Asheboro Fire and Rescue Department,” said Willie Summers, Chief of the Asheboro Fire & Rescue Department at the meeting. “We anticipate growth taking place in the southern portion of the city, keep in mind we’re not only building for the here and now, but for the future.”
The new fire station, Station 33 (since Station 3 is already taken by the Liberty Fire Department) would be located three miles from Station 1, which is on S Church St, and 10 miles from Station 2, which is on N Fayetteville St.
Even though the new station is still in the planning phases, equipment and crews have been assigned to Station 33 for several months and they are currently operating out of the Emergency Services Headquarters on McDowell Rd.
Officials say they are in the initial stages of design for the new station which will incorporate the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) into the station’s design. The EOC can be utilized for the City of Asheboro during special events or emergencies. Asheboro Fire & Rescue says they hope to hire twelve new positions as part of the project with the equipment being purchased over time as part of the department’s already established apparatus replacement plan.
Construction will be funded through state and federal grants that have already been designated for the City of Asheboro and would include extending water services down Zoo Parkway and the installation of a turning lane.
The land is currently zoned as farmland in the Ulah Fire District and the city says they will have to redraw fire districts in the future.
The owner of the property, Tanner Investment Properties LLC, agreed to sell the land to the City of Asheboro for $113,750, approximately $35,000 per acre. The remaining $6,250 from the $120,000 allocated from the general fund will go towards closing costs.
Tanner Investment Properties LLC purchased the lot of 56.21 acres in July of 2023 for $475,000.
City officials say they expect to close on the land by December 29th, 2023. The facility is projected to open by the end of 2025, with site work beginning in 2024.