District plans for fifth, sixth fire stations


EAST MANATEE -- Fire commissioner Darrell Phillips updated Braden River Fire District commissioners this week about the progress of the district's fifth station.

The station, which will be at the corner of Lorraine Road and State Road 70, is still in the design development phase.

The design-build team is finalizing the plans and checking prices for building materials, such as concrete and wood, Phillips said.

The cost of the station has increased from roughly $900,0000 to $1.2 million because of building costs and an increase in the station's size.

The station will be about 8,300 square feet and will include bunks, showers, a captain's office and emergency medical service vehicles.

Phillips, who was elected by the board to oversee the construction of the station, said he'd find out whether the design-build team now could get a permit from the county to clear the site and pour the station's foundation.

The station is expected to be complete in the summer of 2006.

In other action at Monday's commission meeting:

Commissioners voted to keep the current rates on a special property tax.

Braden River Fire Chief Byron Teates reported that the district collected more than $2,800 to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Teates said he was still waiting to hear from Bradenton Fire Chief Mark Souders in response to questions commissioners had about 75 acres the city annexed last month.

The district received a community forestry assistance grant and a hurricane assistance grant, totaling $5,000 each, which will be used for two brush trucks.

Commissioners previously asked Teates to talk to Rex Jensen, president and CEO of Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, about the district acquiring property for a sixth fire station off Lakewood Ranch Boulevard.

Teates said the discussion was favorable and that Jensen said he would talk to SMR's board of directors about the property.