Posted on Friday August 23, 2019 at 10:45 a.m.
Bourget’s fire station is officially open!
Hundreds of Bourget residents got the chance, on August 22, to get a sneak peek at the village’s brand-new fire station and paramedic hall.
“As you are aware, the fire hall is combined with the United Prescott-Russell Counties paramedic services and we’re very proud of our partnership with Counties,” said Clarence-Rockland mayor Guy Desjardins in front of an assembled crowd. “This kind of partnership is truly the strength of our region. We know that it is with collaboration that we can give better services.”
The event, which began at 4:30 p.m. featured several speeches by dignitaries, followed by guided tours of the new station and finishing with a free community BBQ.
“Our motto is honoring the past, serving the present and protecting the future,” expressed Clarence-Rockland Fire Chief Brian Wilson, a hint of emotion in his voice. “This building epitomizes that motto. To the dedication of this building to our former chief, Gilbert Labelle, to meeting the needs of today’s firefighters, to investing in the local community in establishing a strong foundation for protective services to meet the needs of the community for years to come, this new station is something that our department is proud of and something that our community can take great pride in.”
The chief emphasized that the building of a new fire station was urgently needed in order to meet the changing needs of the growing population of Clarence-Rockland. “The nature of fire stations is changed over time,” said Wilson. “For those of you who know where our old station is down the road, it has served our needs for several decades. However, we have identified that over time, the need for proper facilities to reduce the risk of cancer among our firefighters, to improve the health and fitness of our firefighters and to provide for a safe and encouraging learning environment. These factors have led us to the construction of this new joint fire paramedic building.”
The station, which sits on 18 acres of land, will also serve to offer fire college courses as well as training and rescue courses for local and neighbouring firefighters, following last year’s signing by the City of a memorandum of understanding with the Ontario Fire College. “Since then, we’ve hosted over ten week-long courses to bring quality training to firefighters from around the area with many planned in the coming months and years,” reiterated Wilson.
During the ceremony, dignitaries unveiled a plaque commemorating Gilbert Labelle, who was involved within the local fire services for 50 years. “The name Gilbert Labelle as builder of the Bourget Fire Services will forever be commemorated on a plaque that will be installed at the entrance of the station,” said Desjardins.
The construction of the building began in May 2018.