In Quarters: La Pointe, WI, Emergency Services Facility

April 13, 2022
The efficiently planned Emergency Services Facility was designed to keep square footage down yet is home to the fire, EMS and police departments.

This facility received the Volunteer/Combination Notable Award in the 2021 Firehouse Station Design Awards. Find the full list of winners here

The town of La Pointe, WI, is a small community and vacation destination that’s located on Madeline Island on Lake Superior. It’s accessible by ferry in the summer, ice road in the winter and wind sled when neither of those options are available. One only can imagine the logistics of constructing a new multimillion dollar facility there.

In March 2019, a fire destroyed the emergency services facility that served the island. The town of La Pointe lost its facility, equipment and everything that made the departments who they were. They acted quickly, acquiring equipment from various departments throughout the Midwest. They then turned their attention to rebuilding the facility that they once called home.

Various members of the town selected an architectural firm to not only design the facility but manage the construction, too. Various teams of contractors worked with the firm to plan accordingly on how to construct the facility in a timely and efficient manner on an island. Equipment and materials had to be brought across the lake via ice road and ferry. Timely coordination was critical for ferry transportation to ensure construction could commence but also to keep the busy tourist season uninterrupted. The heaviest piece of equipment to be sent by ferry was a 145- ton crane, which set the tanks for a new fire suppression system.

This efficiently planned facility was designed to keep square footage down yet is home to the fire, EMS and police departments. Shared spaces were the key to this design, but it was important to give each entity its own individual space. The town now is protected by a state-of-the-art facility.    

Architect/Firm Name: Wendel/Five Bugles Design

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