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Town selects architect for new fire station

Date: 3/28/2011

March 28, 2011

By Chris Maza

Reminder Assistant Editor

WILBRAHAM — The next step in coming up with a plan to renovate the Wilbraham Fire Department's main fire station can now begin.

The town has selected Tecton Architects as the designer for what will be a revamped primary facility for the department, pending the signing of a negotiated contract by the Board of Selectmen, according to Building Inspector and Zoning Enforcement Officer Lance Trevallion.

Trevallion, who was appointed project manager by the selectmen in January, said the town is still a ways off from seeing any actual construction.

"Right now, this is just the design phase," Trevallion said. "They are going to develop plans, schematic designs and cost estimates for us."

Tecton Architects is an architecture and interior design firm based in Hartford, Conn., which, according to its Web site, has experience with public safety buildings. Their projects include the Suffolk, Va., fire and rescue headquarters and the Chesapeake, Va., public safety training center.

Locally, Tecton renovated the old Rocky Hill, Conn., town hall and transformed it into a new police station. The project received the 2007 Award for Excellence from the Associated Builders and Contractors Association.

Its site reports that Tecton, which claims to be "the second largest architecture firm in Hartford [Conn.] and third largest in the region," recently grew with a February 2011, merger with another Hartford-based architectural design firm, Du Bose Associates.

Trevallion said that the cost element might be more scrutinized than the actual design, as long as the schematics are functional and practical.

"As a town, obviously, we have to have a design that is cost effective," Trevallion said. "We have a budget that we have to live within and we have to make sure that this project isn't going to exceed that."

According to Trevallion, once the designs and estimates are completed, they will be presented to the town, and then voted upon at the Annual Town Meeting, which is scheduled for May 16 at 7 p.m.

"Hopefully we can get approval at Town Meeting so we can move forward," he said.

The fire station, which is located on Boston Road, has been the headquarters for the Wilbraham Fire Department since it was built in 1952.

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