DES MOINES, Iowa -- One of Des Moines' busiest fire stations is now back in business.
After being closed for about 30 days for renovation, Des Moines Fire Station 3 is back open with a brand new staircase.
“There’s also a tunnel that runs under the station that’s used for wiring and heating, different mechanicals and that needed to be shored up. And then with the renovations of the steps it was just under $200,000,” Ward 2 Des Moines City Councilwoman Linda Westergaard said.
The brand new staircase ensures firefighters have a safe way in addition to their fire pole to get from their living quarters down to their trucks.
“We have to be careful with every call that we go onto, even it might just be leaving the station so we don’t become a victim. That just delays our response time to help somebody who is needing our help,” Des Moines Fire Department Lieutenant Rick Thomas said.
During the renovations, nearby residents and businesses were worried about possibly having longer response times, but Westergaard assured them otherwise.
“There were absolutely no issues and I, myself, and the city put out several notices to let residents know that there would be no impact to them. Everybody was served in the same amount of time,” Westergaard said.
Thomas said crews are very happy to be back at home base serving the area they know best.
“They were split up before. The three different areas, medic squad, the pumper and the ladder were all in different stations so they're all very glad to be back here. They're more familiar with the area and they're back together as a team," Thomas said.
The next step for the fire department on the northeast side of town is to build an entirely new station, Des Moines Fire Station 11.