By Emily Gallagher
Times West Virginian
The Mannington Volunteer Fire Department is one step closer to getting more space for its fire trucks.
During Monday’s meeting, council unanimously approved a motion to allow the demolition of an old garage to make space for a new garage to hold fire trucks.
Rodney Hatfield, a volunteer firefighter and contractor, approached council in December asking for permission to tear down a building along Monroe Street so a new garage can be built. Council told Hatfield to purpose a plan and design of what he had in mind for the new garage at the next meeting.
On Monday, Hatfield showed council members two designs; one plan included the old building still standing and the other without the building. Hatfield, who is a contractor with Hatfield Contracting, said the contracting company will do the demolition.
“(The demolition) is not going to be all that expensive because the building is mostly block and brink,” Hatfield told council. “Obviously, if we demolish the building, the new garage will be bigger than if we didn’t.”
Mayor Jim Taylor said the old building belongs to the volunteer fire department but they needed approval from council to demolish it. He said having a second garage for trucks will benefit response time for emergencies.
“The new garage will give them direct access to Monroe Street, which will lead to a quicker response time,” Taylor said.
Taylor said the old building was built in 1920 and has no historical significance. He said it needs to be torn down.
“It’s got leaks in it, the roof is in bad condition, so now is the time for them to upgrade their garage system,” Taylor said.
The funding for the demolition and construction of the new garage comes from grants and private donations because it is a volunteer fire department.
“They’re going to start with demolition and they’re doing that themselves,” Taylor said.
Once the demolition of the building is complete and the lot is cleared, Taylor said before they can start construction on the new, he told Hatfield the plans for the new garage will have to be shown to council.
“They will bring to council their proposal with the size fo the garage and everything else because they’re building this on city property,” Taylor said.
Taylor said the city wants to work to meet the needs of the volunteer fire department.
Along with meeting the needs of the fire department, council discussed getting fire lane signs put along Monroe Street to keep the street clear of parked cars.
Taylor said because cars are parked across from the entrance of the fire department, it’s difficult for trucks to get in and out of the station.
“We’re going to enforce the fire lanes in that area,” he said. “No cars will be allowed to park in the fire lanes.”
Email Emily Gallagher at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @EGallagherTWV.