WEST BRATTLEBORO—Despite the chilly, drizzly weather on Saturday morning, April 22, about 100 guests turned out for the ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open the Brattleboro Fire Department’s Station 2.
Town officials gave their opening remarks and the entire department — looking fine in their dark blue dress uniforms — assembled for a group photograph. Attendees snacked on bagels, donuts, and coffee donated by area businesses.
Unlike the previous Station 2 building, the new firehouse fits in well with the village’s architectural vernacular.
It also makes it easier for the department to do its job.
The old station was too small for the larger, modern trucks, and the associated loose equipment.
The new station is part of a $12.8 million capital improvement project that includes a new police headquarters on Black Mountain Road and extensive renovations and additions to the fire department’s Central Station, located on Elliot Street in Brattleboro.
Representative Town Meeting approved the bonds to fund these projects in 2012 and 2016.
Construction on Station 2 began in August 2016, and was completed in February, on schedule and slightly under-budget.
The old Station 2, which sits to the right of the new building and is set to be demolished soon, was built in 1960.
When a visitor asked Brattleboro Fire Chief Michael Bucossi when firefighters knew they had outgrown the old station, he admitted he couldn’t give an exact date because that became evident before he joined.
Bucossi has been with the fire department since 1977.
The new Station 2 came into use on March 20, Bucossi said. “We had a backing-in ceremony,” a ritual where the firefighters back the trucks into the new station, he said.
At the open house, attendees checked out the new building, the trucks, and the department’s rescue boat.
“It’s nice to see the families come,” Bucossi said, “and it’s good for them to see what their tax money is paying for. It’s a nice feeling to have the support from the community.”
“It really makes it official,” Bucossi added, “having everybody in the station.”