City will look at adding ambulance garage to fire hall

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Should the City of Gaylord build a separate ambulance garage, or have the ambulance combined with the fire hall?

Gaylord’s City Council will soon be seeking an answer to that question, and looking at the positives and negatives.

Mark Brandt, Amy Hahn and Lynn Grochow, members of the Gaylord Ambulance Service, presented a preliminary proposal for a 36 x 60 ft. ambulance garage. The garage is proposed to be located east of the fire hall.

Brandt explained that this size building is seen to be good for the ambulance service now and into the future. About half of the building would be used to store the two ambulances. The remainder of the building would be for office space, kitchen, mechanical room, storage, and a unisex bathroom with shower for cleanup as needed, and a meeting room. The preliminary estimated cost is $80,000 – $83,000.

A meeting room is needed, Brandt explained, because of the refresher course provided for members and for neighboring communities. A kitchen would also be used, especially during the refresher course. “It’s more of a necessity than nice to have,” Brandt said.

Mayor Doug Quast said that he doesn’t see the present ambulance garage, attached to city hall, as a “heath conscious environment.” He also added that there was no place for ambulance service members to clean up after a call. Quast said these preliminary plans are a good start, but he has also heard some concerns from the fire department that they would be landlocked if the ambulance garage is built to the east of the present facility.

Hahn noted that one consideration is that someday, in 10-20 years if the ambulance service doesn’t receive enough volunteers, that the fire department might need to operate as first responders.

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