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Balmoral Fire Station to be replaced

12/19/2002 10:55:49 AM

Emergency Services Minister Mike Reynolds today announced that a new fire station would be built to replace the existing Balmoral station on Brisbane’s south-side.

Mr Reynolds said the location of the new station was yet to be determined, but assured the community that the existing excellent fire and rescue service for the area would continue into the future.

“In coming to this decision, I have listened to the genuine concerns of the local community and fire fighters, and to the very strong representations made by the Member for Bulimba, Pat Purcell, on behalf of his constituents,” Mr Reynolds said.

“The earlier recommendations of the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service were based on earlier data and planning information, and given the recent and predicted strong growth in the Bulimba and Port Corridor area, I asked the QFRS to reconsider its options.”

Mr Purcell thanked the Minister for considering the concerns of the community and fire-fighters, leading to this new service delivery direction by the QFRS.

He said that the rapid growth in the suburbs around the Balmoral station, right through to the massive expansion of the Port of Brisbane, demanded a thorough examination of the options, and the Minister had ensured that this had occurred.

“My constituents can now be confident that they will be well-served by a professional fire service with very good response times,” Mr Purcell said.

Mr Reynolds said the existing Balmoral station – the oldest in Brisbane – would remain open until the replacement station was built and operating.

The QFRS would begin the search for a new site as soon as possible.

Operating from the existing Balmoral fire station is not a realistic long-term option. The station in Pashen Street was built in 1927, and celebrated its 75th anniversary in March.

At the time of its construction, the Balmoral station was among a group of four new stations opened in Brisbane as part of a major fire service expansion in the late 1920s. The other three stations – Albion, South Brisbane and Alderley – have long since closed.

“The Balmoral station has a number of operational problems that cannot be resolved. The station realistically has passed its use-by date and it simply doesn’t provide the sort of facilities required for a fire service of the 21st Century,” Mr Reynolds said.

“The station is heritage listed and therefore cannot be demolished or upgraded to accommodate modern fire fighting equipment requirements.”

Mr Reynolds said the new location would be determined as part of a broad risk and emergency response formula taking into account that the new Wynnum Fire Station near Wynnum Plaza is due to be opened next year.

Mr Reynolds thanked Mr Purcell for his input into the options regarding the existing Balmoral station and said Mr Purcell would continue to be involved in the search for the best possible site for the new station.

The Minister also acknowledged the feedback from the United Firefighters Union and local community groups regarding fire service delivery in the area.

Contact for media enquiries: Justin Coomber (Minister's Office) on 32478194

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