MUSCATINE, Iowa – The City of Muscatine completed the purchase of the Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) Maintenance Facility on Lake Park Boulevard in January 2019, and provided members of the City Council a tour of the facility Monday (July 8).
“We wanted to let you see this facility and hear some of the ideas that staff has,” Randy Hill, project manager for the City of Muscatine, said. “We wanted to have this discussion and answer any of your questions before we proceed to the next step.”
Since six of the seven City Council members were present, Mayor Diana Broderson called the special meeting of the council to order before Hill, Public Works Director Brian Stineman, Muscatine Fire Chief Jerry Ewers, and Muscatine Police Chief Brett Talkington discussed the potential for the facility.
City department heads have toured and discussed possibilities for the former maintenance facility since January including a third fire station for Muscatine, a substation for the police department, a home for the Special Response Team (SRT), storage and maintenance for Public Works, and storage for Parks and Recreation.
“There are a lot of possibilities for this facility and we wanted the council’s input as we move forward,” Hill said. “The next step will be hiring a consultant, developing a plan and cost estimate, and setting a time table for development of this site.”
Council members began their tour in the area at the front of the main building that could become the home of Fire Station No. 3.
“A town of our size should have four stations but just the addition of this one will help cut down response time and improve our insurance rating,” Ewers said.
One engine and an ambulance would be stationed at the site that would be similar to Fire Station No. 2 located on Stewart Road.
“The additional room for file storage, training, and being a home for the SRT makes this location ideal for the police department,” Talkington said.
Storage of equipment, material and files may be the biggest plus for the facility.
“We have a heated building, a cold storage building, an area that we can use for greater salt storage, and an area in the back half of the facility that would be ideal for storage,” Stineman said.
Council members also had some ideas for usage of the facility including the potential to build a new fire station in one corner, have additional maintenance areas for city vehicles, and potentially an area for recycling.
“There are many good ideas and they can be discussed with the consultant,” Stineman said. “For now we will keep putting these ideas together and be prepared to take the next step.”
The City Council will meet for their in-depth session at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 11, in the City Council Chambers at Muscatine City Hall.