Fordice may build new city fire station

Published 7:33 pm Saturday, August 20, 2016

City officials have begun negotiations with Fordice Construction Co. of Vicksburg to build the city’s new fire station in east Vicksburg, City Attorney Nancy Thomas said.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen Wednesday authorized Thomas to begin talks with Fordice, which had the low base bid of $1.518 million for the project to build the station at the intersection of Berryman Road and Maxwell Drive. Paul Jackson and Sons of Brookhaven, the only other contractor to bid on the project, bid $1.6 million to build the station.

Both bids were more than the $1.1 million budget for the project, but Mayor George Flaggs Jr. said Aug. 10 the board would shift money from other projects in the city’s $9.2 million capital improvements bond issue to make up the difference. He called the fire station a necessity.

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Thomas said the city wants to include three of the addendums, or options for the building — a third bay, a turnout gear locker and hose hangers — that will increase the project cost to $1.65 million.

“We are going move money from the farmers market pavilion, which will increase the money we’ll have for the fire station to $1.5 million.” Thomas said. “That will put us within 10 percent of the bid. Under state law, if the project cost is 10 percent of the budget, we can negotiate with the contractor to lower the cost.”

An artist’s rendering of the 5,110-square-foot fire station called “Vicksburg Fire Department Station 3,” shows a brick building with a metal roof and three bays for vehicles that will open on Berryman Road. The third bay will add an additional 1,360 square feet to the station.

City officials have discussed building a new station in east Vicksburg for several years to have better and quicker access to accidents on Interstate 20, the multi-story hotels in the Clay Street area and Merit Health River Region Medical Center, which falls under the fire department’s responsibility.

City officials in April signed the final papers to purchase the 2.2-acre tract at the corner of Maxwell Drive and Berryman Road off East Clay Street from Waring Investments for $400,000.



About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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