Fire Stations: The Ultimate Work & Live Design Challenge
Why do we design so many fire stations? It’s the challenge of it.
Fire stations are multi-faceted. Of course, a fire station is a garage for apparatus like ambulances, fire engines, ladder trucks, and sometimes boats and other vehicles. Oxygen tanks, turnout gear, and toolsmust be safely stored and maintained on the premises.
A fire station operates as a professional workplace. Fire chiefs, lieutenants, and support staff need offices. Conference and meeting rooms. Training spaces. Sophisticated communications and emergency response systems.
Firefighters live, sleep, and eat at the station during their shifts. That means dormitories, locker rooms, and restrooms to accommodate a growing and diversifying force. Commercial kitchens and dining areas. Places tostudy, work out, and relax.
A fire station is an anchor within a community. It is a safe place with trusted and trained professionals to meet the needs of the public. Many fire stations are designed to withstand hurricanes and remain open as a neighborhood shelter or command center during disasters.
It’s a tall order to design for all of these functions under one roof. And, of course, it should be energy and water efficient, and compliment the architectural style of the surrounding community.
It’s a challenge we embrace because it’s critical to the communities we call home.
See fire stations around the world: