Lower Ninth Ward Gets First New NOFD Station Since Storm

NEW ORLEANS  – Mayor Mitch Landrieu, City and State officials, and FEMA celebrated the opening of the new $4.3 million New Orleans Fire Department Engine 39 Fire Station at 5600 North Claiborne Ave. in the Lower Ninth Ward on Thursday, Oct. 16.

         This 9,000 square-foot fire station is the first new fire station constructed since Hurricane Katrina and combines Engines 22 and 39 into an improved, hurricane resilient facility.

          “Today, we celebrate another sign of renewal and reinvestment in the historic Lower Ninth Ward and Holy Cross communities,” Mayor Mitch Landrieu said. “As one of my administration’s committed projects and the first new fire station constructed since Hurricane Katrina, the new NOFD Engine 39 Fire Station is a symbol of this community’s rebirth and another sign of the city we are working to build. Our fire fighters are our heroes because when the fire alarm rings, they run towards the fire. This new fire station provides them with the resources they need to better protect our residents with this state-of-the-art, hurricane resilient facility.”

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         NOFD Superintendent Timothy McConnell said, “For the citizens of the Lower Ninth Ward and the men and women of the NOFD who serve this community, Station 39 represents the City’s commitment to the safety and protection of our citizens. This state-of-the-art facility will give our first responders the sustainability to safeguard the citizens of this community throughout an emergency situation and it goes a long way in achieving a revitalized the Ninth Ward neighborhood.”

         The new $4.3 million fire station is a three bay facility which has been built to sustain hurricane force conditions and remain operational during an emergency situation. Design features of the new fire station include second floor living spaces high above FEMA’s mandated flood elevation requirements and a 100kW generator that can run essential electrical operations for three days with direct connection to an onsite fuel tank. By combining the old stations into one new station, improved amenities for the firefighters were incorporated to include individual dorm rooms, a fitness room, and larger communal spaces. In addition, public accessibility amenities include an elevator and first floor ADA-compliant restroom facilities. The fire station also includes new trees along North Claiborne Avenue and Caffin Street and new fencing and green space, along with trees along Lamanche Street.

         City Council President Stacy Head said, “The Council is incredibly grateful to FEMA for their continued investment in our recovering community, including this beautiful $4.3 million fire station which will serve as home base for our first responder heroes. With FEMA’s support, we continue to build back stronger and smarter, and that is evidenced the many amenities and upgrades at this site—from the living spaces to the landscaping.”

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         FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Robinson said, “This new fire station is a vital part of the Lower Ninth Ward community and another step in New Orleans’ recovery following Hurricane Katrina. We continue our proud partnership with the people of New Orleans and Southeast Louisiana as they work to rebuild their lives and communities.”

         Funding for this project comes from FEMA public assistance, Disaster Community Development Block Grant funding, and City Bond funds. The new NOFD Engine 39 Fire Station was designed by Trapolin-Peer Architects of New Orleans and constructed by Kemper Construction Company of New Orleans. Jesco Enterprises Inc., Jeff Co Contractors, Anderson Burke Construction, and Allied Construction served as DBEs on this project.

         The Mayor’s Office reports in early 2015, the new $19 million Andrew P. Sanchez Community Center will join the new NOFD Engine 39 Fire Station at the intersection of North Claiborne Avenue and Caffin Street in the Lower Ninth Ward. These important public facilities are just up the street from where a new CVS/pharmacy will be constructed in 2015, marking the first major retailer to commit to a project in the Lower Ninth Ward since Hurricane Katrina. In addition, $42 million in critical road repairs will begin this January as part of the City’s FEMA-funded Recovery Roads Program. Through the Mayor’s targeted, place-based development strategy, the Lower Ninth Ward’s recovery is also benefitting from initiatives like the $52 million “soft second” mortgage homebuyer assistance program and Lot Next Door Program reforms aimed at getting over grown and vacant property back into commerce. In recent years, the City reopened the new $2.1 million Oliver Bush Playground and teamed with the New Orleans Hornets and Salvation Army to provide over $465,000 in improvements to Sam Bonart Playground.

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