Rolling Meadows taking next step in fire station relocation

Rolling Meadows officials will start interviewing project management firms next week as the next step in the city's efforts to relocate both of its fire stations.

After much back-and-forth, the city council last year decided to move both stations to improve emergency response times throughout all.

Seven project management firms responded to a request for qualifications, Chief Scott Franzgrote told the city council Tuesday. Interviews with four of the companies will help make sure the costs estimates are all-inclusive and are an "apples to apples" comparison, he said. Rolling Meadows has Fire Station 15 at 3111 Meadow Drive, which was built in 1958, and Fire Station 16 at 2455 S. Plum Grove Road, which was built in 1980. Under the plan, both would be relocated - though it hasn't been determined to where - to better balance the calls the department receives.

According to city documents, the cost of building two new fire stations is about $9 million, which includes all design, land acquisition, engineering, architectural and construction costs.

"This project will have a long-term impact on the community," states a city document describing the project to possible firms.

Deciding what to do about the city's fire stations has been somewhat of a moving target over the past few years. In 2014, the council decided to build a third station, but reversed course last year and voted to remain at two stations, but in new locations.

Franzgrote plans to present a recommendation at the council's Feb. 16 committee-of-the-whole meeting for which project management firm should handle planning, acquisition, relocation and scheduling for the project. Once a management team is on board, Franzgrote said they will need to put together a timeline and address the question of funding. Mayor Tom Rooney said last year that if the city issued bonds for the entire project, it would be the largest bond issue in Rolling Meadows in more than 20 years.

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