Trending Topics

Closed Mich. firehouse could have second life as training center

Officials in Flint are considering making the former Fire Station 4 into a public safety training center

Flint Michigan Firehouse 4.jpg

Former Flint Fire Department Fire Station 4.

Google Maps

By Ron Fonger

FLINT, Mich. — The city is making plans to renovate and reopen a shuttered Flint fire station on Flint’s north side, making it part of a new training center for firefighters and police.

A proposal for taking the first step in the project — acquiring 27 parcels of land from the Genesee County Land Bank for nearly $9,000 — was sent to the City Council just last week and members said they need much more detail before getting the ball rolling.

Police Chief Terence Green told the council that plans are being made to renovate Fire Station 4 on Industrial Drive near Stewart Avenue, to add to the building, and produce a training center with classrooms, a 10-stall shooting range, grounds for training simulations, and additional shared parking.

Green said a portion of the site dedicated to police training would cost in excess of $1 million but did not estimate the total cost of the project. MLive-The Flint Journal could not immediately reach a city spokeswoman for additional information on Tuesday, Dec. 26.

The resolution sent to the council says the 27 properties the city is seeking to purchase are around Fire Station 4 and include six parcels on Carlton Street, 14 on Roberts Street, one on West Pierson Road, two on Industrial, and four on Stewart.

Green said such a training center would be valuable to the city, saving the time of police officers who currently spend at least an hour commuting to and from Shiawassee County for quarterly firearm training.

“If we had our own facility we could have firearm training much more frequently,” Green said.

Police have been looking for a more convenient location for gun training for more than a decade.

In 2007, Flint officials said they were utilizing a shooting range at the Thumb Correctional Facility in Lapeer after losing access to a range used by several area police departments at Bishop Airport.

The Bishop Airport Authority shut down that range after a Federal Aviation Administration employee claimed a bullet whizzed past his shoulder as he worked on a runway back in October 2005.

Fire Station 4 closed because of Flint budget cuts in 2009. By the following year, scrappers had stripped the building of its copper and boiler, leaving the building in need of extensive renovation if it were to be used again.

A Flint fire official said at the time that the station had been left susceptible to scrappers because city officials didn’t want to portray the image of a blighted community by boarding it shut.

The council Finance Committee took no action on the land purchase at its meeting on Dec. 18 . The resolution to approve the resolution could be considered again when the committee meets on Jan. 3.

©2023 Advance Local Media LLC.
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.