Another new fire station is one step closer to reality, thanks to actions taken at last week’s meeting of the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners.
During the meeting, the board unanimously approved the purchase of 2.94 acres of land at the intersection of Yellow Creek Road and Conns Creek Road/Roscoe Collette Road, east of Ball Ground in the amount of $224,116.20 to be used for the construction of a new fire station in the area. County Manager Jerry Cooper explained to the board that the initial plan was to purchase just over two acres of land at the site. However, the amount needed grew to just shy of three acres so that drainage requirements for the development would be properly met, with the property owner agreed to the increase in the amount of land for purchase.
Cherokee County Fire Chief Tim Prather said the station planned to be located on the newly purchased land will serve as a replacement and relocation for the Mica Fire Station, built in the 1970s as a volunteer fire station. The land where the new station will sit is approximately half a mile from the current station.
“This project has taken just over a year and a half to complete,” Prather said. “Originally, we were planning to renovate the old station, but estimates were exceeding expectations. Eventually, it was decided to be more cost effective to relocate and construct a new station.”
Similar to many of the other stations throughout Cherokee County that were built by volunteer fire departments, the current Mica Fire Station was not built to house career firefighters. In addition, many of them have begun to significantly wear down and are in need of extensive repairs/renovations.
Prather said the purchase will be closed on Friday and the design phase will begin. He expressed the hope that the county and the fire department will be able to have a completed design in hand, send out and receive bids for construction and have dirt start moving by the end of the year.
Prather called the partnership Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services shares with the county government effective.
“The board of commissioners and County Manager Jerry Cooper continue to be very supportive on preparing for the future of Cherokee County Fire,” Prather said. “I am very grateful to have the support of the board of commissioners and approving the purchase of this land and hopefully soon, the construction of the new station.”