Fire officials say construction has begun on a third fire station for the Barrington-Countryside Fire District, which will improve response times and lower insurance premiums for Barrington area residents.
The Barrington-Countryside Fire Protection District, which covers portions of Barrington Hills, South Barrington, Lake Barrington and Inverness, broke ceremonial ground in late May on the new station.
Station 39 is being built on a five-acre parcel of district-owned property at 1004 South Hough Street in unincorporated Barrington. The project will be completed early next year.
It will complement the fire district’s two current stations, which are located at 120 West Algonquin Road in Barrington Hills (Station 37) and 22222 North Pepper Road in Lake Barrington (Station 38).
The groundbreaking ceremony took place at Station 38 to better accommodate nearly 50 guests who were in attendance.
Trustees Keith Hanson, Marvin Hill, Matt Hower, and Tom Long – joined by Fire Chief Jim Kreher and BCFPD attorney Rich Curran – stood before a large planter box filled with earth taken directly from the Station 39 site and used silver shovels to officially “break ground” on the roughly $5 million project.
Those in attendance included on-duty BCFPD officers, firefighter/paramedics, former trustees, community and state elected officials, and local business leaders.
“Today is a very exciting and important day; one that is seven years in the making,” Kreher explained during brief introductory remarks.
“We take another step closer to realizing our vision for three fire stations that will improve delivery of fire and emergency medical assistance to all we serve,” he said.
When operational, Station 39 will enable the Barrington-Countryside fire district to respond to more than 90% of all emergency calls throughout the District in six minutes or less.
“Our goals as an organization are to provide timely emergency responses to all we serve, and to equip our professionals with the resources to safely and effectively provide those services,” BCFPD President Keith Hanson explained. “Station 39 will help us achieve both these objectives.”
Trustee Thomas Long, M.D., a former emergency room physician, emphasized the importance of rapid response in fire and emergency medical situations.
A structure fire can double in size every 30 seconds. Meanwhile, the effectiveness of medical treatment for patients suffering cardiac arrest diminishes significantly after only six minutes.
“Saving lives and property requires prompt action by firefighter/paramedics in close proximity to the location of an emergency,” Long said.
Station 39’s location will also help reduce insurance premiums paid by many residents and businesses – particularly those who reside in the eastern sections of the fire district – due to its geographic proximity.
The fire district will build and staff Station 39 without having to raise taxes on residents.
Chicago-based Studio 222 Architects and Pepper Construction, based in Lake Zurich, were chosen by the board to serve as the project architect and construction manager.