Tampa opens new Fire Station 11 for Sulphur Springs, North Tampa

Markys Gillyard, 9, checks out equipment on Engine 11 Monday at Tampa Fire Rescue’s new station on W Waters Avenue.

SKIP O’ROURKE | Times

Markys Gillyard, 9, checks out equipment on Engine 11 Monday at Tampa Fire Rescue’s new station on W Waters Avenue.

TAMPA — The city's busiest fire station on Monday got a new, more centrally located home.

Officials opened Fire Station 11 at 1500 W Waters Ave. because it responds to more than 10 percent of all calls for service in the city. Mayor Bob Buckhorn said it will be in a better position in its new location to serve Sulphur Springs, Lowry Park, North Tampa, Forest Hills and surrounding neighborhoods.

The old Station 11, built on E Fairbanks Street in 1956, "really was an embarrassment and had been an embarrassment for a long time," Buckhorn said. "Those living conditions for the men and women who put their lives on the line for us was just not acceptable. . . . These guys are up and down all night long."

The new station is 8,660 square feet, with a three-bay garage flanked on either side by work spaces and sleeping quarters. It has high-efficiency lighting and controls, solar-powered outside lights and water heating, energy-efficient heating and cooling, use of recycled materials, and Florida-friendly landscaping.

It cost $1.66 million, paid for through the Community Investment Tax and built by Pillar Construction. It started taking calls immediately after the ribbon-cutting.

Tampa opens new Fire Station 11 for Sulphur Springs, North Tampa 04/21/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 23, 2014 3:07pm]

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