By Mason W. Canales

Killeen Daily Herald

COPPERAS COVE - City Manager Andrea Gardner will negotiate with Wiginton Hooker and Jeffry Architects to design a new fire station at Grimes Crossing Road and Avenue B, following City Council action Tuesday.

The council authorized Gardner to begin negotiations with the Plano-based architecture firm that will establish the design, the estimated building cost and the length of the construction project.

If the city decides to proceed, the structure would replace fire station No. 2, currently at 1208 W. Avenue B.

"That is all part of the process," said Fire Chief Mike Baker about not having an estimated cost of the building yet, because the figure will be determined by city staff and the architects.

Gardner said if negotiations are successful, the building should cost less than $3.5 million, construction would begin by January of next year, and last no longer than 12 months. If the city enters into a bond election to fund the facility, January 2013 would be the earliest construction could begin because an election could not be called before November.

Better service

By replacing fire station No. 2, the city would receive a better ISO rating - a mark set by insurance companies to determine how protected homes are from blazes - and call times throughout the facility's service area would decrease.

"We are going to make a 50-year building," said Baker, noting that the city wanted the fire station to meet all its sustainable needs.

The city last built a fire station 12 years ago to serve its west side. Station No. 2, built in 1977, houses one fire engine, a brush truck, an ambulance and a reserve engine.

The council also:

Established a Copperas Cove Youth Advisory Council and appointed Councilman Gary Kent to serve on the board.

Appointed several residents to the 2012 Texas A&M-Central Texas golf tournament committee.

Moved the school zone on Robertson for Copperas Cove Junior High to include Creek Street.

Approved the city's strategic plan.

Contact Mason W. Canales at or (254) 501-7474. Follow him on Twitter at KDHcoveeditor.

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