Community Board: Fire station site will allow widest reach

Fire trucks responded to a call from employees at the Monsanto Company Vegetable Seeds Division research station in San Juan Bautista. 

San Benito County supervisors’ choice of a Rosa Morada Road location for a new fire station in northern San Benito County looks like a sensible decision due to geography and the county’s existing ownership of a site there.
San Benito County supervisors last month unanimously approved a location on Rosa Morada Road as the preferred site for a Fire Station No. 3 to serve the northern part of the county.
Supervisors approved the preferred location over another option on Flynn Road and a previously considered site at the airport. With a preferred location, the county can move ahead on an environmental study of that site and alternatives.
The fire chief was supportive of the location. He said there are many high-value properties, and the geographic location allows fire crews to reach a lot of residential areas and roadways.
“If you put a fire station out there, we’re Johnny on the spot,” Fire Chief Bob Martin Del Campo told supervisors.
That sure does make a lot of sense.
Currently, the northern part of the county is underserved compared with other populated areas, and some rural sections receive fairly paltry response times. Station No. 1 is positioned downtown as expected. Station No. 2 is on the southeast corner of the city at Union Road and Airline Highway, another good place for a station considering the heavy residential numbers in close proximity and expected growth in that area. Even though the west side gets pretty good coverage from the downtown station, it could see improvements, too. Eventually, the city should build another station there as well, which could help to bolster economic prospects for the poorest part of town.
Though the county owns the Rosa Morada Road property, a renovation would result in some costs. Interim Public Works Director Joe Horwedel told supervisors there would be expenses to renovate the site, formerly home of the Go Kids nonprofit organization, such as the need to build an apparatus bay.
It still sounds like a great deal, and those kinds of costs are expected. Supervisors made a resourceful choice with Rosa Morada Road, and the entire county will benefit from continued expansion of local fire services.
If you have interest in sitting on the Community Insight Board, email Editor Kollin Kosmicki at [email protected]

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