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Wrightsville Beach Fire Department says the time is now for a new building

READ MORE: Wrightsville Beach Fire Department says the time is now for a new building
It is moldy, cramped and has been an ongoing battle for the past three years; Wrightsville Beach Fire and Police departments say they need a new public safety building, and the town needs to act now. But the Board of Aldermen is not so sure. The building used to be an old warehouse, but for the past 25 years it has been home to the Wrightsville Beach Fire Department. “It was never designed to function as a fire station," said Wrightsville Beach Fire Chief, Frank Smith. In the eighties, the firefighters worked to transform it into a space suitable for fire trucks and equipment. Twenty-five years later the facility has a lot of problems; size is just one of them. Chief Smith said, "We are not talking about cosmetic issues, we are talking about functional issues and that the facility is just too small." Heart attacks are one of the leading causes of death among fire fighters in the line of duty, so in order to stay fit, the full time fire fighters exercise inside the station. But the problem is, there is not a lot of space, so they have to move a truck just to make some extra room. A few years back, the fire department had to vacate the upstairs of the building. It was filled with mold and mildew. Now, they use modular units to make up for the lost space. "Throwing good money into a bad mold problem that just wouldn't go away," Smith said. For the past three years, the town has been working to propose a new public safety building for the police and fire departments. Some board members and residents say now is not the right time, especially since the new building will mean a 1.5 to 2 cent tax increase for residents. But Chief Smith and Mayor Stephen Walen both agree a new facility is imperative to keeping the beach safe. "We can do it now, and enjoy some favorable pricing on the construction and pricing of the building, or we can procrastinate," said Mayor Stephen Walen. The mayor tabled the project in last week's meeting after hearing concerns from the Board of Aldermen. Mayor Walen hopes to re-address the issue in their meeting at the end of the month.

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My father is a Captain at Wilmington Fire Department and his job is to save the lives of people in danger. Even all of you who are complaining about the new building. I have an idea... next time you see a fire, just run inside and make sure that everyone is ok... I bet you wouldn't. Next time you have something to complain about, make sure it isnt about the people that keep you safe... Just start the building. People are gonna cry no matter what. I know that after a year of all of this hype, it will all blow over. God Bless the Firemen. Our Angels on Earth


Funny how many stories written along this one include concerns about our current recession. Then this. Is this really the right time to spend money? People go into debt with credit cards. Why? Because of the difference between a want and a need. If I'm at the store and see something I'd like to have (maybe a treadmill to keep me healthy) but I have only $10 in my pocket, then that treadmill becomes a want and falls to the bottom of my list until better times. As my good ol' mama says... dont spend money you dont have.

I do pay for it

I pay for it in my county. If you live there the taxes you pay will help fund this all the monies that go into putting sand on beaches to rebuild your house because a hurricane as come in. when some gets in trouble in the water, What really is the big issue. Nobody things about this until they need it and when the fire and police, ems don't have the equipment to help you then there is a law suit against them when they should have gotten any way . Would you want to work in a mold building or not have enough working equipment or enough pay to do your job?

I tell you what this one takes the cake

I can't believe the money that is in Wrightsville Beach and taxs, insurance etc. they don't want to upgrade the fire dept. I think it is a shame. Out right Shame. When one of those wonderful big houses, or hotels, or yachts go up in flames, I guess the fire fighters can response from their banana shack to help you. Blow some dust off the money and stop spending on sand. And help the ones that will help you in the time of need.

I couldn't agree more....the

I couldn't agree more....the cost for this new building will raise taxes on the beach around a total of $150 a year? Sorry, but those selfish people on the beach can easily afford an extra $150 a year

Wrightsville Beatch

Then you pay for it.