BREAKING: Bonney-Watson Site Will Pass Away For New Fire Station
Fire District No. 2 commissioners voted at their Dec. 2 meeting to purchase the Bonney-Watson funeral chapel property at 900 SW 146th St. for a new fire station for the Burien/Normandy Park Fire Department.
All three commissioners were â€œadvocates for the new site,â€ Fire Chief Mike Marrs told The B-Town Blog.
Marrs said earlier that once a property for the new fire station was acquired, â€œdesign and permitting will start in earnest around the first of the year.â€
This timetable should permit construction to begin in December 2010 or January 2011, with the fire department moving into its new station about 12 months later.
Cameron Smock, president of CEO of B-W Memorial Corp., which owns this and other Bonney-Watson chapels in King County, said â€œthe fire department approached us unsolicitedâ€ to inquire about purchasing this site.
â€œBonney-Watson has been serving Burien for a long time, the fire department needed a location for its new station, and this seemed like the right thing to do for the community,â€ Smock noted.
Another reason they decided to sell is that, with their chapel and cemetery in SeaTac and a chapel in Federal Way, â€œwe will continue to serve Burien.â€
Fire District No. 2 and Bonney-Watson are expected to issue a joint press release about the purchase Friday morning (Dec. 4).
Voters in Fire District No. 2 approved a $25 million bond issue in November 2008 for construction of new downtown and Normandy Park fire stations. This includes property acquisition and equipping the stations.
Burien needs a new fire station to replace the outdated existing facility at the corner of SW 151st Street and 8th Ave South.
A top priority for the fire department has been a downtown location where response times will be no more than seven minutes anywhere in the district. In addition, a location near major arterials that provide direct access to State Route 509 was desired.
The location of the Bonney-Watson property meets both requirements, and also provides â€œplenty of on-site parking for us, even when station public meeting rooms are in use,â€ Marrs said.
Some Burien City Council members were concerned about a possible net loss of public parking when the fire district earlier considered another property in the downtown area.
The Normandy Park fire station at 135 S. Normandy Road will be built at that location. The existing station will remain in operation during construction.