THE Jandakot Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade will soon have a brand new facility to call home.
Brigade volunteers joined City of Cockburn officials at an official sod turning ceremony on Friday to mark the start of construction for their new station house.
The $578,000 facility will sit on the brigade’s current Banjup site and will include a 225sqm vehicle bay, offices, separate change rooms for men and women, training spaces and storage.
Brigade captain Jarrad Fowler said the new 625sqm station would be a welcome replacement to the former station, which had been a 15m by 15m farm shed built in the 80s.
“The Banjup Fire in 2014 showed us that this area is at heightened risk of bushfire, so having the resources based close to the risk and a modern facility to train our volunteers is a great result for the community and the City of Cockburn,” he said.
Volunteer Karli Hicks and her 17-year-old daughter Kelsey Saundry-Hicks, now a first-year volunteer herself, will be among the first to use the new facility when it’s finished early next year.
Kelsey said despite the excitement of a new station she was sad to see the old station go.
“I’ve spent half my life hanging around at that station so it has an important place in my childhood memories,” she said.
“But I’m grateful, the original base has been around for years so I agree it’s about time the old girl got an upgrade so there’s more space for our babies-the trucks.”
The Department of Fire and Emergency Services provided $328,000 of the funds, with the City of Cockburn contributing $250,000.
Emergency Service minister and Cockburn MLA Francis Logan said this was an example of how the emergency service levy could be used to improve community safety.
“It also highlights the great relationship with local governments and the department to get these kinds of new facilities up and running,” he said.
“I hope that this new facility will serve the firefighters of Jandakot well.”
Fit out is due to be finished in February.