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Altoona Fire & Rescue moving to two new locations as the agency outgrows current location

Wednesday, February 28, 2024
Daniel Gomez | WEAU.COM

ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU) - The City of Altoona's growth has brought a need for room to breathe for one agency.

"We have a lot of moving parts. And, we have to do training or go on calls. And, we've outgrown this building," said Fire and Rescue Chief Mark Renderman.

The Fire Chief does his best with the space given, but for a department with 4 full-time employees and dozens of part times, which all together makes about 50 employees, there is simply not enough space.

"We don't have the facilities for a large around of people to come in at the same time and work together," said Chief Renderman. "It could cause additional injuries or slow down our ability to get on the apparatus and get moved out of here efficiently."

There is not enough space for the apparatuses either. Those include fire trucks, ambulances and even boats.

"We've been trying to sell off any un-needed pieces of equipment to ensure there's space for any new equipment," said Chief Renderman.

The city had decided to work with Fire and Rescue.

"Several years ago, we did a space needs analysis for the entire city. Because, as everyone knows, we're growing pretty significantly," said City Administrator Mike Golat.

Altoona's plan is to move the department to 2 new locations.

One will be at 2000 Spooner Street, which is just down the street.

That building will be shared with Public Works, which moved out of its old location on Bauer Street.

That is where Fire and Rescue will be operating out of as well.

Golat said the move saves the city money.

"It just kind of all fell in place," said Golat.

The move is expected to help Fire and Rescue keep up with the growing call volume. Chief Renderman said it has doubled in the past decade.

"We'll increase the ability to respond from two different locations and then also give us more room," said Chief Renderman.

"It provides good service for our residents," said Golat.

It is not a permanent solution.

"But this is a good solution for some time for the city," said Golat.

Chief Renderman said Altoona Police will also benefit from the move. The agency will take over the building the two share currently share.

The chief and Golat say it will take some time and a lot of money to have a permanent central fire station built.

Fire and Rescue is expected to move out in the coming months.

Copyright 2024 WEAU. All rights reserved.

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