LIVERMORE FALLS — Two locations for the proposed new fire station were presented at the selectmen meeting Tuesday.

Jim Pelsor, architect with Bunker & Savage Architects of Augusta, said when he arrived at the fire station last month, “At first, it seemed very positive to reuse the existing fire station site.”

That changed when he discovered the problems there. The back of the station has settled, the nearby embankment is a concern, and there are questions about property lines, among other issues. It made sense to look for another site, he said.

“The existing site will require, in our opinion, the complete removal of the existing foundation and building,” he said.

Pelsor said if the town chose to build a fire station on the present site, it would have to be closer to Park Street than it is now.

The former elementary school site between Church and Baldwin streets was identified as suitable for a fire station. An office area would be included that would be more modern than the current space, and showers would be included.

There would be 30 parking spaces and four bays for firetrucks, with 14- by 14-foot doors required.

“The existing station is well below that,” Pelsor said of the doors.

To allow for future expansion, the former elementary school building would need to be taken down, he said.

“The elementary site does give you, for what we believe are about the same costs, some room for expansion in the future, more space for trucks,” Pelsor said.

One concern, Town Manager Kristal Flagg said, is that the elementary school building is up for sale.

“If this sells, and this doesn’t happen for us, then what do we do?” she asked. She emphasized the need to have other sites.

The probable project costs were listed at between $1.08 million and $1.34 million for the elementary school site, and between $1.09 million and $1.38 million for the existing site.

Resident Bob Jones said that with the uncertain future of Verso’s Androscoggin Mill in Jay, “I think this is a hard sell to go to the voters with $1.3 million with interest.”

Livermore Falls Fire Chief Tim “TD” Hardy said the new building could lend itself to a well-placed, shared fire station with Jay in the future.

“For some of their responses to the Route 133 area, it puts their trucks in a better position,” he said.

Jones said if Jay was going to use the building, they should share in the cost for constructing it.

“Trying to convince them to get one for us, they haven’t gotten to that point yet,” Flagg said. “Maybe five years from now, but we can’t wait five years.”

Pelsor said the fire station could be sold if the town chooses to build a new one on the elementary school site.

Selectmen will continue discussion of the building plans at their meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20.

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“The existing site will require in our opinion the complete removal of the existing foundation and building.” — Jim Pelsor, Architect with Bunker & Savage Architects


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