Community leaders gathered Saturday to celebrate the opening of the Normal Fire Department's new headquarters.
The headquarters at 606 S. Main St. provides a central location for the first responders to get to any emergency quickly. That includes close proximity to Illinois State University, which accounts for a large increase in call volume during the school year.
“This station will put us in a prime location to service not only the University, but the Town of Normal as a whole with faster response times to our busier areas,” Fire Chief Mick Humer said in a statement. “We worked very hard to design this building to be adaptable for not only our current needs, but future growth because we plan on this station being in service for at least the next 50 years.”
The $7.5 million building is the first of Normal's fire stations to have two stories and a fire pole. The headquarters also prides itself on being the town's most eco-friendly station despite its significantly larger size. The station's rooftop garden area is part of its qualification for LEED-2 "green" building certification.
During Saturday's open house, community members toured the building and got a feel for what living and working in the station is like. Many of the EMTs, firefighters, and other first responders were spread all over the building to educate the public on its uses and benefits.
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