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New fire station nears, construction for Hemlock approved

LAPLACE — A new Hemlock Fire Station is one step closer to reality after the St. John the Baptist Parish Council awarded Aegis Construction of LaPlace a $2,993,000 contract Tuesday for the construction of the new volunteer fire station.

Designed by Sizeler Thompson Brown Architects Regional Design Group LLC, the new state-of-the-art firehouse will be a 13,000 square foot facility comprised of two floors of administrative space, a mechanical shop, fitness space, sleeping quarters and a decontamination room.

Parish Director of Communications Paige Falgoust said the next step in the build is to receive a Notice to Proceed. Once that is in hand, Falgoust said, construction should take approximately 12 months.

The new station — funded through sales tax and revenue bonds for the LaPlace Volunteer Fire Department — will be located at its original site at 521 Hemlock Street in LaPlace.

The Hemlock Station, originally built in 1962, was rebuilt in 1966 after Hurricane Betsy destroyed it in 1965. The station also sustained damage from 2012’s Hurricane Isaac.

The site’s firefighters have been operating out of a leased building across the street from the original, and now demolished, building.

Chief of Fire Services Cain Dufrene said the added space of the new building will provide for numerous advances in firefighting and apparatus equipment, new trucks and other equipment that will better serve the needs of parish residents.