A major step has been taken to once again having a fire station in Mobile’s Crichton neighborhood. On Tuesday, the Mobile City Council agreed to purchase property at the old Crichton School site to build a new station.
The Gus Rehm Fire Station on Moffett Road was closed about a year and a half ago due to mold and other issues. The Crichton area hasn’t had a fire station since then.
“We need a station that can go up Moffett Road, Crichton, Trinity Gardens, and Midtown,” said Mobile City Councilman Fred Richardson who represents the area. “And that’s what this station will do.”
Some say the city and residents would have been better off with the new station on a major street like nearby Springhill Avenue. But Mobile’s interim fire chief is satisfied with the spot.
“Would we rather be out on Springhill Avenue? Yes. But we are fine with the spot there,” said Pappas. “Most people want a fire station in the community. We haven’t found too many places that don’t want us there.”
Pappas says the location of the old station on Moffett Road can’t accommodate a new, modern $2.5 million dollar station like the one that will be built on the Crichton school spot. Pappas says it will be very much like the new station built in Theodore three years ago.
The City paid $190,000 for the property. At one time, the Mobile County Public School System said it would donate the property, but later sold it to a developer. The City purchased a portion of the parcel from that developer.
Councilman Fred Richardson says he wants a community meeting room in the fire station design, but the mayor’s office is opposed.
“I’m not stopping,” said Richardson. “I’ll be preaching. I’ll be the voice crying in the wilderness that we need a meeting room in Crichton.”
The area has been served by the Ashland Place Station on Old Shell Road. The future of that facility is now in doubt.
Mobile’s Chief of Staff Colby Cooper said he hopes the station will be open in about one year.