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Hillcrest Fire Station No. 5 opens

Photo credit:
Hillcrest Town Council

Marking the fourth new fire station to open this year and the ninth to be built or renovated since he took office, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today continued his commitment to investing in public safety infrastructure and neighborhood services with the grand opening of the new Fire Station No. 5 that will better serve Hillcrest and the surrounding neighborhoods.

Mayor Faulconer was joined by City Councilmembers Chris Ward, Assemblymember Todd Gloria, new Fire-Rescue Chief Colin Stowell and community leaders to officially open the new, modernized facility that replaces an aging station first built in 1951.

“We’re in the middle of one of the biggest building booms in city history with the record level of investments we’re making to improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods,” Mayor Faulconer said. “This new fire station in Hillcrest is just the latest example of this surge in community projects that will benefit our neighborhoods for generations to come. After decades of neglect by past city leaders, we’re finally moving our city forward and delivering the projects our residents have been clamoring for.”

Since he took office in 2014, Mayor Faulconer has more than tripled the City’s annual investment in the Capital Improvements Program to fund infrastructure projects – from $179 million in Fiscal Year 2014 to $559 million for the current fiscal year. Those investments have led to a surge of new or upgraded parks, fire stations, libraries, recreation centers and lifeguard stations as well as road repair, transportation projects and stormwater upgrades that benefit neighborhoods across the city.

Located at 3920 Ninth Ave., this new 10,731 square foot, two-story station includes two-and-a-half apparatus bays, nine dormitories, a kitchen, day room, watch room, exercise room and lounge. The bays house a fire engine, a battalion chief vehicle and a utility vehicle. The dormitories sleep one battalion chief, two captains and six firefighters.

“Fire Station 5 will provide Hillcrest and the greater Uptown community with much needed and deserved public safety resources and personnel,” said Councilmember Ward. “With the addition of this state-of-the-art facility residents will have access to excellent neighborhood services that will ensure the quality of life of the community as it continues grow.”

It also incorporates best practices from the City’s Cancer Awareness and Prevention Program by including a locker room to keep gear away from living quarters and two separate washing machines for gear exposed to carcinogens.

“When I served on the City Council, completing this fire station was a promise I made to Hillcrest and Uptown. Though a long time in the works, working together, we got it done,” said Assemblymember Gloria. “It is my hope the residents of these communities will look at this facility feeling a greater sense of safety in their neighborhood, knowing help is near whenever it may be necessary, and have a sense of pride in their new fire station. In addition, I hope communities citywide will look at this facility as an embodiment of our commitment to the future — ensuring functional fire stations are accessible in every neighborhood.”

In addition to the ribbon cutting ceremony, the San Diego Fire-Rescue Foundation presented a $3,000 check from Tacos Libertad in support of Fire Station No. 5. The restaurant raised money during the month of March and donated it to the Foundation in support the station.

“We appreciate the support from Mayor Faulconer and our council in providing Hillcrest’s new station,” said Fire-Rescue Chief Colin Stowell. “Engine 5’s crew handled more than 2,500 calls for service in 2017 and between January and July 2018, have responded to more than 1,600 calls. The crews here are very pleased that the stationis larger and fits with current standards of functionality and safety.” 

Since Mayor Faulconer took office, the City has opened new fire stations in five neighborhoods – City Heights, Little Italy, Mission Valley, Point Loma and Hillcrest – and renovated four others that serve the communities of La Jolla, Mira Mesa, North Park and Southcrest.