Site for proposed new Victoria Fire Department headquarters would be adjacent to Pacific Mazda backlot on Johnson Street. Courtesy City of Victoria

Victoria to get new downtown fire hall and emergency centre

Johnson Street public safety building would include emergency operations centre, ambulance station

The Victoria Fire Department is getting a new main hall downtown as part of a $35.9-million mixed-use project.

The City of Victoria and the department announced the project this morning, for a new public safety building to be located on Johnson Street adjacent to Pacific Mazda, a short distance from the current No.1 fire hall on Yates Street.

“This is an inspiring development that will meet our needs today and well into the future,” said Victoria Fire Chief Paul Bruce in a release. He added that the department continues to pursue local and regional efficiencies as a way to provide a high level of emergency services.

“The inclusion of an Emergency Operations Centre capable of managing hazard response specific to the City of Victoria is a practical and effective improvement to the management of emergencies on a holistic level,” he said.

The project will be built under an agreement with Victoria-based Dalmatian Developments Limited Partnership, a joint venture between Jawl Residential and Nadar Holdings Ltd.

The facility will be located on Johnson Street as part of a new mixed-use development adjacent to Pacific Mazda.

The 41,700 square-foot facility, billed as a state-of-the-art, post-seismic rated building, will replace the current 26,700 square-foot fire headquarters built in 1959. The new centre will not only house fire and rescue services and an emergency operations centre, the B.C. Emergency Health Services has agreed to lease 3,200-sq. ft. of space for a stand-alone four-ambulance hall under a 20-year co-service agreement.

“We’ve taken an innovative approach to this project. We canvassed the private sector and said, ‘We need a fire hall, what are your ideas?,’” said Mayor Lisa Helps. “What has come back is a fantastic project with a high-quality local developer that will see a fire hall built as part of a mixed use project that will be much more cost effective to the city than a stand-alone project, or rebuilding on the current site.”

The City indicated that no property tax implications would be incurred for the project. In February 2016 council approved in principle using up to $30 million from the the City’s debt reduction reserve to procure a new fire department headquarters at either the existing site or a new site. That money did not include any land purchase costs or the construction of such multi-use components as the ambulance station.

Victoria council will consider the authorization of the funds during discussions of the City’s 2018 financial plan this Thursday (March 22) meeting. Dalmatian is expected to bring the overall project through the rezoning process, which includes the construction of the new public safety building.

The developer plans to submit a rezoning application within the next six months and if all the approvals are received, construction is expected to take approximately 28 months.

editor@vicnews.com

Victoria Fire Department

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Victoria police investigating chop-shop found in Beacon Hill Park

Police asking public to register bikes with them in case lost or stolen

Island Health issues Victoria overdose advisory

Health authority warns of increase in overdoses from opioids and stimulants

Residents welcomed to The Summit in Victoria’s Quadra Village

Modern 320-bed facility designed for people with complex care needs including dementia

Victoria considers extending free transit passes for youth

Motion for extension of funding comes to council July 16

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Beloved Island woman dies at 106

Dorothy Adair adored by the many people she met in Chemainus in two short years

Man arrested for allegedly pushing unsuspecting seniors, jumping on cars at Parksville mall

Cops arrest man after ‘aggressive incident’ at Wembley Mall in Parksville

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Most Read