Wednesday, January 24, 2018
News Roundup

Dunedin hires St. Petersburg architect for new fire station

DUNEDIN — The city has hired an architectural firm to begin designing a bigger, better fire station that's anticipated to open just inside Highlander Park next year.

The Dunedin City Commission unanimously approved the $196,348 contract with Wannemacher Jensen Architects Inc. of St. Petersburg on Thursday night.

Officials estimate it will take six months to design a replacement for the city's oldest fire station, located inside the park on Ed Eckert Drive off Michigan Boulevard.

Station No. 61 has been targeted for replacement since at least 2000, when the first of two city assessments determined the 4,679-square-foot station was obsolete.

According to the report, the 40-year-old station is too small, sits in a flood zone, lacks sprinkler and lightning protection systems, and likely wouldn't withstand a hurricane. The building sits at a blind intersection with limited visibility east and west. Cars parked for special events often block the way in or out.

The new 7,500-square-foot station will be built closer to the park's Michigan Boulevard entrance and adjacent homes. It is to be built with environmentally friendly features, have a life expectancy of 75 years and be able to withstand a Category 4 storm.

Public Works director Doug Hutchens said Wannemacher Jensen, one of 26 firms to apply for the job, has designed more than 15 fire stations and recently completed its eighth green-certified station in St. Petersburg.

Once blueprints are in, Hutchens said, the city will meet with neighborhood residents. The project will come back for commission approval before the city obtains permits and hires a construction team.

"One of the things the architectural firm has been tasked with is to come up with a design that will complement the site. And that means not only (making sure it matches the look of) the adjacent buildings but also the residential component," Hutchens said to commissioners' questions about how the new station will fit in.

The city last summer budgeted $1.5 million for construction, which is expected to begin early next year and take eight months. Hutchens said Pinellas County will contribute 13 percent of costs.

In other action...

• It's unclear how or when city leaders will proceed with discussion of a new city logo. Commissioners followed City Manager Rob DiSpirito's recommendation to delay discussion Thursday following a last-minute discovery that a proposal designed Wilesmith Advertising amd Design of West Palm Beach is similar to the 11-year-old logo used by the St. Petersburg Pier.

Wilesmith founder Margaret Wilesmith said she hadn't seen the Pier's logo until contacted by the Times on Thursday afternoon. She initially said she would recommend withdrawing the Dunedin logo from consideration. But, minutes before the meeting began, she said she'd been too hasty: "They are dissimilar enough that I think the city has room to discuss it further."

• One of two pavilions under construction at J.C. Weaver Park will be named after city partner Coca-Cola Co. The commission voted 5-0 to honor the company for its longtime support, including a $135,000 contribution offsetting park maintenance costs over the last five years. Coca-Cola general manager Tim Goodwin said Thursday night that the company's Dunedin facility produces goods which are shipped across the entire United States and four other countries.

Keyonna Summers can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 445-4153. To write a letter to the editor, go to tampabay.com/letters.

Comments
Lightning beats Predators in overtime

Lightning beats Predators in overtime

NASHVILLE — Steven Stamkos’ celebration said it all.The Lightning captain delivered an emphatic fist pump after his rocket one-timer clanked in off the crossbar, tying the score with just over two minutes left at Bridgestone Arena on Tuesday night. T...
Updated: 1 hour ago

High school scoreboard for Jan. 23

Tuesday’s scoreboardBoys basketballBoca Ciega 55, Canterbury 53Girls basketballBoca Ciega 65, Largo 19
Updated: 2 hours ago

Hernando sheriff: Shooter injures three; in standoff with SWAT

BROOKSVILLE — A shooter was on the loose Tuesday night after injuring three victims, according to Hernando Sheriff Al Nienhuis.The sheriff would not say if there were any fatalities.The Sheriff’s Office received a report about the at about 9 p.m. Dep...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Updated: 2 hours ago
Sheriff: Pasco man planned, then carried out neighbor’s execution

Sheriff: Pasco man planned, then carried out neighbor’s execution

HOLIDAY — A neighborhood dispute ended in gunfire when one neighbor executed another on Tuesday, deputies said, as the victim kneeled in his own front yard begging for his life.The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said the execution, which took place ju...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Career Q&A: Sharpen interview skills to overcome impression of shyness

Career Q&A: Sharpen interview skills to overcome impression of shyness

Q: At the end of a recent interview, the manager told me that I would not be getting the job. He said I wasn’t a good fit for the position because I was shy. As a naturally introverted person, I found this very discouraging. How can I avoid similar p...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Lawmakers call for additional investigations into Tampa Bay’s two CareerSource boards

Lawmakers call for additional investigations into Tampa Bay’s two CareerSource boards

Federal and state lawmakers are calling on Congress and the Florida House of Representatives to investigate whether two regional workforce centers inflated the number of people they helped find jobs. U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D–St. Petersburg, and sta...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Undersea quake causes fear of tsunami in Alaska; Kentucky teen kills 2 classmates in shooting; ex-gymnast tells Nassar: ‘You didn’t heal me. You only hurt me’; more in U.S. news

Undersea quake causes fear of tsunami in Alaska; Kentucky teen kills 2 classmates in shooting; ex-gymnast tells Nassar: ‘You didn’t heal me. You only hurt me’; more in U.S. news

AlaskaUndersea quake causes panicA powerful undersea earthquake sent Alaskans fumbling for suitcases and racing to evacuation centers in the middle of the night after a cellphone alert warned a tsunami could hit communities along the state’s southern...
Updated: 5 hours ago
MacDill crews shift from Islamic State battle to join winter fight against Taliban

MacDill crews shift from Islamic State battle to join winter fight against Taliban

Now that the fight against the largely defeated Islamic State is winding down, the U.S. Air Force is turning its efforts toward the Taliban and moving aircraft and crews to Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.Crews and a KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refue...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Deputies identify 11-month-old who drowned, no other details released

Deputies identify 11-month-old who drowned, no other details released

BRANDON — The 11-month-old girl who drowned in an apartment complex pond on Monday was identified as Deleah Morgan by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday.Deputies released no other details about the incident or the ongoing investigation....
Updated: 5 hours ago