Groundbreaking ceremony held for new north Phoenix fire station

PHOENIX (KSAZ) - The Fireside community is overjoyed at the opportunity of a safe neighborhood.

"We actually had a fire at our playground and it took the fire department 11 minutes to get here!" Sue Sriver said.

"I've been there since the first of the year and I know how badly we've needed fire protection services out here, so we are excited to finally have it be it to play and it'll be here soon," Sharon Wizik said.

Phoenix fire brought this land nearly 17 years ago. In 2006, the department got the funds to begin building, but with the downpour on the economy, the project was put on hold... until now.

"The last couple of years, if you've noticed, the growth out here is just staggering," said Phoenix Fire Chief Kara Kalkbrenner. "It's like their new residential homes, new commercial homes, traffic on the freeway."

Firefighters were seeing an increase of calls to the Fireside neighborhood, making this new site the perfect place for the 10,500 square-foot fire station.

Until the project is complete, responders have been working out of a temporary station -- the Residence Marriott hotel.

"We've got a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week engine company out of there, which has reduced the call volume in this area by half," Chief Kalkbrenner said. "We couldn't be more thrilled!"