New Bonham Fire Station now open

By: By Charles Warner - [email protected]
Charles Warner | The Union Times A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new Bonham Fire Station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. Ground was broken on the $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility at the end of February 2017 and the Bonham Fire Department began operating out of it one year later on the last day February 2018. The new station is larger and provides more facilities for the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters to use.
Charles Warner | The Union Times The new Bonham Fire Station has been in operation since the end of February, one year after ground was broken to begin construction of the $1.3 million facility. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new fire station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The state-of-the-art facility is located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community.
Charles Warner | The Union Times This is the kitchen in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The station is state-of-the-art and provides the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters with a number of facilities including the kitchen which is combined with its training area.
Charles Warner | The Union Times This is one of the offices in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The new station is larger than the department’s old station which was acquired by Union County for economic development purposes.

BONHAM — The Bonham Community’s rapid and ongoing transformation into an industrial hub of Union County has created a need for a modern firefighting facility capable of adapting to and growing with the needs of the community and that’s what it now has with the new Bonham Fire Station.

“Eight years ago Bonham was a very rural district and the (Bonham Fire) department handled a few house fires, but mainly car fires and vegetation fires,” Captain Phillip Russell of the Bonham Fire Department said Monday. “We now have two industrial parks — Commerce and Mac Johnston — and a number of industries such as Gonvauto, Gestamp, Standard Textile, Southeastern Emulsion, Timken Repairs, and Santuc Precision.

“Our call volume is now one hundred and ten to one hundred and twenty a year on average with thirty percent being confirmed structure fires, thirty percent false alarms or alarm malfunctions, twenty percent are automobile accidents involving extrication, fifteen percent are miscellaneous including Hazmat,” he said. “We provide fire inspections and training for the local industries and we back up EMS if they need us at Ellen Sagar (Nursing Center) and we also respond to any fires there.”

The growth the Bonham Community has experienced in recent years and the increased demand for the services of the Bonham Fire Department provided the impetus for the construction of the new fire station. That fire station, located at 2091 Jonesville Highway, will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony followed by an Open House on Thursday, April 19, from 6-8 p.m.

Russell pointed out that the growth of industry in the community provided further impetus for the construction of the new fire station as the site where the old station was located was needed to help facilitate future industrial expansion.

“Gestamp wanted the old property for economic development,” Russell said. “The Union County Economic Development Fund purchased the old property.”

In July 2016, Union County Supervisor Frank Hart said that the old Bonham Fire Department building was located adjacent to the Union Commerce Park and near the H. Mac Johnson Industrial Park, both of which are located between USC 176 and SC 18, and as such is a prime location for future industrial development. Hart made these remarks after Union County Council had voted to allocate $600,000 from the Economic Development Fund to help the Bonham Fire Department relocate and thus open up its old location for economic development, either in the recruitment of new industry or facilitating the expansion of existing industry.

The county continued to assist the Bonham Fire Department with its effort to relocate and build a new fire station in December 2016 when council voted to loan $300,000 from the Economic Development Fund to the department. The loan, which the department used to help build the new fire station, is to be repaid to the county over seven years at the rate of $42,857 a year.

Hart said at the time that the loan was part of the county’s efforts to facilitate “Project Wolverine,” the $290 million expansion of a local manufacturing facility which would generate 100 new jobs. He said the incentive package the county had assembled for Project Wolverine included transferring the old Bonham Fire Department site to the industry undertaking the expansion.

(It was revealed in 2017 that Project Wolverine was the expansion of the Gestamp manufacturing facility.)

At the end of February 2017, ground was broken for the new, state-of-the art fire station and during the ceremony Bonham Fire District Chairman Chris Scott spoke about the role the industrial growth occurring in Bonham had played in the decision to build a new fire station, a fire station he said would be designed to accommodate the department’s future growth.

“The increase of industry here in this district pointed us in this direction,” Scott said. “Gestamp needed our land and we needed bigger facilities with the possibility of growth in the near future, the possibility of more trucks and more firefighters. It will be easier for us to house them.”

Russell said that the department began operating out of the new facility — which he said cost $1.3 million to build — on the last day of February of this year. He said the facility is, as Scott said in 2017, state-of-the art with more facilities for the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters to make use of and designed so as to accommodate any and all future growth the department may experience.

“This facility has a training room/kitchen combination, a physical fitness room, multiple offices, a day room, four drive-thru apparatus bays, a work area, and bathrooms with showers,” Russell said. “The building was designed with future growth in mind.”

Russell said the new facility is the result of a collaboration between the Bonham Fire District Board and Fire Chief Scott Austin, Hart and Union County Council, County Engineer Jerry Brannon, Monty Kingsmore and his company Kingsmore Construction which served as the contractor, and architect David Langley who designed the facility. He said that because of this collaborative effort the new fire station is now in operation and will be for many years to come.

“We’ve already had our first training session and others are planned,” Russell said. “We’re really looking forward to what this facility can bring to the citizens.”

Charles Warner | The Union Times A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new Bonham Fire Station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. Ground was broken on the $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility at the end of February 2017 and the Bonham Fire Department began operating out of it one year later on the last day February 2018. The new station is larger and provides more facilities for the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters to use.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3256.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new Bonham Fire Station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. Ground was broken on the $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility at the end of February 2017 and the Bonham Fire Department began operating out of it one year later on the last day February 2018. The new station is larger and provides more facilities for the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters to use.

Charles Warner | The Union Times The new Bonham Fire Station has been in operation since the end of February, one year after ground was broken to begin construction of the $1.3 million facility. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new fire station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The state-of-the-art facility is located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3257.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times The new Bonham Fire Station has been in operation since the end of February, one year after ground was broken to begin construction of the $1.3 million facility. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the new fire station will be held Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The state-of-the-art facility is located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community.

Charles Warner | The Union Times This is the kitchen in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The station is state-of-the-art and provides the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters with a number of facilities including the kitchen which is combined with its training area.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3259.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This is the kitchen in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The station is state-of-the-art and provides the department’s 19 volunteer firefighters with a number of facilities including the kitchen which is combined with its training area.

Charles Warner | The Union Times This is one of the offices in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The new station is larger than the department’s old station which was acquired by Union County for economic development purposes.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3260.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This is one of the offices in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The new station is larger than the department’s old station which was acquired by Union County for economic development purposes.

Charles Warner | The Union Times This is the physical fitness room in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The new state-of-the-art facility is larger than the department’s old station and cost $1.3 million to build.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3261.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This is the physical fitness room in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The station has been in operation since the end of February, but will have its formal opening with a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. The new state-of-the-art facility is larger than the department’s old station and cost $1.3 million to build.

Charles Warner | The Union Times This is the day room in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. It is one of the many facilities included in the station for us by the Bonham Fire Department’s 19 volunteer firefighters. The department has been operating out of the new station since the end of February and will hold a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the facility on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3263.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This is the day room in the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. It is one of the many facilities included in the station for us by the Bonham Fire Department’s 19 volunteer firefighters. The department has been operating out of the new station since the end of February and will hold a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for the facility on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.

Charles Warner | The Union Times The fire trucks of the Bonham Fire Department are at the ready in the drive-thru apparatus bays of the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The new $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility is larger than the department’s old station and has been in operation since the end of February. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House will be held for the new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3265.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times The fire trucks of the Bonham Fire Department are at the ready in the drive-thru apparatus bays of the new Bonham Fire Station located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community. The new $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility is larger than the department’s old station and has been in operation since the end of February. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House will be held for the new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.

Charles Warner | The Union Times These large screen TVs are located in the training room of the new Bonham Fire Station and are used for the training and instruction of the Bonham Fire Department’s 19 volunteer firefighters. The department has been operating out of the new station at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community since the end of February and has already held one training session there. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House will be held for the new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3266.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times These large screen TVs are located in the training room of the new Bonham Fire Station and are used for the training and instruction of the Bonham Fire Department’s 19 volunteer firefighters. The department has been operating out of the new station at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community since the end of February and has already held one training session there. A Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House will be held for the new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m.

Charles Warner | The Union Times This sign sits along the Jonesville Highway in front of the new Bonham Fire Station. The station, which is located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community, is a $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility which began operations at the end of February. The Bonham Fire Department will hold a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for its new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. Refreshments will be served and the public is invited to attend.
https://www.uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_IMG_3267.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This sign sits along the Jonesville Highway in front of the new Bonham Fire Station. The station, which is located at 2091 Jonesville Highway in the Bonham Community, is a $1.3 million state-of-the-art facility which began operations at the end of February. The Bonham Fire Department will hold a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Open House for its new station on Thursday, April 19 from 6-8 p.m. Refreshments will be served and the public is invited to attend.
Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony to be held April 19

By Charles Warner

[email protected]

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.