Wildfire training centre opens
Sep 5, 2013 / 11:35 am
The new Provincial Wildfire Training Centre was officially opened in Merritt today, and the $4.74-million project will also house the town’s fire zone office.
Construction crews broke ground on the project in October 2012, and the building was completed this past month. In addition to the wildfire centre and the fire zone office, the building will also be used as a strategic operations base for out-of-province firefighters during busy wildfire seasons.
"This new firefighting facility is an exciting development in the City of Merritt and will provide many economic benefits to our community,” says Susan Roline, Mayor of Merritt.
“We enjoy an excellent working relationship with the Wildfire Management Branch, and we are looking forward to strengthening those ties."
The new facility, with a floor area of 1,332 square metres, will provide space for up to 58 staff, storage areas for firefighting equipment and three classrooms to support field training.
"Protecting the lives and livelihoods of millions of British Columbians requires significant investments in training, equipment, infrastructure and technology,” says Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.
“This new facility is the latest example of our government's financial commitment to that goal."
The provincial government leased the 2.176-hectare site for the centre from the City of Merritt. The 25-year lease was signed on Sept. 21, 2012 and the government has an option to renew it for another 25 years.
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