It's a historic day for the Charlottesville Fire Department. Tuesday is the first day of service at the Fontaine Avenue Fire Station.
Fire officials say this is a long time in the making. It's the first new fire station built in Charlottesville in more than 50 years. Now they're celebrating - and getting right to work responding to emergency calls.
Firefighters from the Ivy station have been relocated to the Fontaine Avenue Fire Station, as well as to the department headquarters near downtown Charlottesville. Tuesday morning, they changed the shift locations, and the 911 center updated all city and county maps to identify vehicles responding out of the Fontaine station.
The first official call came just after 8 a.m. It was for a car accident on Fifth Street and Harris Road.
"This is on the west side of the city where a lot of the residents have been wanting to have a presence close to the west side for a long time. The west side here had our longest response times, and we've now basically filled that void in the community,” said David Hartman, project lead for the Fontaine Avenue Fire Station.
The fire station also holds a piece of history- a piece of steel from the north tower of the World Trade Center is suspended in the lobby.
Fire officials say the station is a multi-purpose building. They say it's a community space, a training facility and a home not just for the fire department, but for other public safety departments - like the rescue squad - as well.
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