OZARK, Mo. — This week, a public grand opening ceremony for the city of Ozarks’ newest fire station will finally take place.
This is happening a few short months after it began running.
“We have the quiet of a neighborhood, but we have the ability to be on the highway and get to anywhere we need to very quickly, “Assistant Chief Donald Gregory of Ozark Fire Protection District said.
Fire Station #2 is quite the upgrade over its old location, says Gregory. It now sits on North 25th Street, West of Highway 65. But before this shiny new station was built, their former now-demolished location, was in one of the more bustling areas of town.
“The area of 22nd and CC has undergone a significant commercial boom since that station was originally built as a garage in 1983,” Gregory said. “Being able to be in relatively close proximity to highway CC – but not being on the highway – not only allows us to have a little bit of a quieter operating basis from the station, but we’re also able to not impact traffic anytime we have to make a non-emergency response.”
This station was paid for by a combination of selling previous station property and city funding. During construction, the fire department shared space with the Christian County Ambulance District, just next door.
“We were fortunate to have them as a partner not only when we respond to calls but they also opened up their facility,” Gregory said. “There was no interruption of services to the general public.”
“If we call, they’ll come running,” Mark Lenclos with the Christian County Eagles Lodge said.
Residents and businesses that now have a reduced response time to emergency services, something people like Lenclos just around the corner are thankful for.
“It’s a security blanket for us around here,” Lenclos said. “Most of our members are elderly. We have a lot of elderly people around us. If it beats the time they get to the scene, it makes everything worthwhile being there.”
That ribbon-cutting ceremony, which has been months in the making due to the pandemic will take place Thursday, Sept. 10, at noon.
It is open to the public, and masking will be required for a tour.