It is almost impossible to comprehend the number of ways that the Town of Sweden can find to waste the taxpayer’s money. But building a fire station that the firefighters can’t use has to take the cake.
Back on January 5, 2014 the Suburban News published an article, New public safety building ready for fire district, that said, “The Brockport Fire District is ready to take possession of a new public safety building on Owens Road in the Town of Sweden.”
But more than a year and four months later, the building is still vacant. It seems that the firefighters got the short end of the stick on this deal.
The Town of Sweden spent $375,000 of the taxpayers’ hard earned dollars to buy and erect that pre-fabricated building on Owens Road as part of the agreement to create the Fire District, and the Fire District still can’t use the building.
One of the biggest problems is that the plot of land at 80 Owens Road didn’t have any water service and the architectural plans for the building only called for a 2-inch water line into the building. That’s the size of a residential water line. But the fire district wanted a hydrant on the property that they could use for training, and that really requires a 6- inch water line.
The architect hired by the Town of Sweden, David Strabel, drew up a plan that called for a water line that would be large enough to supply water to the two bathrooms and the kitchen, but not large enough to supply the water the fire district would need for the hydrant.
However, architect David Strabel is so proud of the building that he has even posted the plans for the building online. They make for some interesting reading.
According to his website, David Strabel is a registered architect who operates a small private weekend practice that provides full and abbreviated architectural services. Well the new fire station at 80 Owens Road definitely shows that he is a weekend architect who provided abbreviated architectural services to the Town of Sweden.
The first page of the plans that Strabel posted online contains a table of contents listing the subject covered on each of the 19 pages. There is a section on the site plan, a section on the floor plan, and even a section on the ceiling plan. There is also section on the mechanical plan and a section on the electrical plan. But there is no section on the water supply.
It seems that David Strabel neglected to plan for the water.
“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”
Strabel’s site plan on page 2 shows a 12-inch water main on the west side of Owens Road and a 2-inch water pipe under the road to the south side of the building. The 12-inch water main on the west side of Owens Road was put in during the 1950s to supply water to the Owens-Illinois glass-bottle manufacturing plant, which closed in 1984.
That same page also shows a 2-inch water pipe running from the road to the south side of the building.
But the plan had to be changed from a 2-inch water pipe to a 6-inch water main, and that caused a delay, because the 6-inch water pipe had to be certified by the Monroe County Department of Health.
On April 8, 2015 Strabel certified to Monroe County Department of Public Health that the installation of the 6-inch water main was satisfactorily completed. That is 458 days after the Suburban News published the story that said, “The Brockport Fire District is ready to take possession of a new public safety building on Owens Road in the Town of Sweden.”
The Monroe County Department of Public Health conducted bacteriological testing on April 8, 2015 and notified the Village on April 10, 2015 that the results were good and that the 6-inch water main could be put into service. They notified the Village because the Brockport Water Department supplies the water to the Town of Sweden.
But the building is still vacant, so there is something else wrong with the building. The word on the street is that the concrete floor is not strong enough to hold a fire pumper, that the ventilation system is not sufficient, and that the water drains installed in the floor are too small.
Stay tuned for further updates.