On Friday, Aug. 16, a ribbon cutting for Lincoln's new Fire Station 15 was held, marking the first time in history that Lincoln Fire & Rescue and the Lincoln Police Department share a facility,
The Public Safety Center complex is now home to Fire Station 15 and Police SE Team and is located at 6601 Pine Lake Rd., providing services to residents on the city's southeast side. Lincoln police have occupied their portion of the facility for approximately three months.
Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird, Police Chief Jeffrey Bliemeister and Fire Chief Michael Despain, along with firefighters, police officers, city council members and members of the public, were in attendance at Friday's ceremony.
A combined color guard made up of firefighters and police participated in a flag raising in front of the new facility.
Station 15 is the first new fire station in Lincoln in 24 years, and a new Engine 15 will arrive in November. Station 15 will also be the quarters for newly established Battalion Chief 2. The city was recently divided into two battalions with east and west boundaries and eight fire stations in each. Station 16 is scheduled to open in February 2020.
Several other stations have also been relocated and new apparatus bought to replace some of Lincoln's aging fleet under Chief Despain.
Station 15, including the police facility, were paid for from a 1/4 cent increase in sales taxes over six years. The Fire 7 rescue and Police department have received strong support from mayors, city council and citizens to make these upgrades and new construction projects possible.