The Kirkland City Council approved the purchase action and a sales agreement of a property that will be the home of the new Fire Station 27.
The new facility at 13118 121st Way NE. will replace the aging building at 11210 NE 132nd St.
City of Kirkland staff began their negotiations with the property owner in 2017 and have since reached an agreement on the terms for a purchase. The city agreed to a purchase offer of $5.56 million dollars. City officials said this will be covered by an inter-fund loan.
On April 16, council took another step closer to making this plan a reality. If the land purchase is finalized, the city will still need the dollars of local taxpayers to fund the construction of a new station — potentially coming via a ballot measure in 2020.
The move comes after an annexation in 2011. A Woodinville fire station on the edge of Kingsgate was closed as a result of the annexation because it no longer fell within the Woodinville Fire District, said Kellie Stickney, communications program manager for the city of Kirkland.
Residents in that area, since the annexation, have been served by the existing Fire Station 27. But the city hopes the new location — in a more centralized spot — will result in better service and shorter response times for these neighborhoods.
“The new Fire Station 27 fulfills the promise that the city made during annexation to provide equal or better service,” Stickney said.
A new station will also help alleviate any safety concerns the city has with the current facility. The fire station is technically up to seismic standards, but those are seismic standards from the 1970s. The new station would hit modern safety standards.
And a new building would come equipped with a modern ventilation system. It would mitigate any off-gassing that accumulates at the current Station 27, thus creating a healthier environment for firefighters.
The current firehouse will be kept. The city has identified that the property could be useful for a number of things, Stickney said. This includes a place to store equipment or could potentially become a satellite facility for public works or parks. And it will continue to function as a north-end fueling station.
“We are currently in the due diligence period, and as long as we don’t discover anything unexpected, which we don’t think we will, then we’ll move forward with the purchase of the property,” Stickney said.
She added that the city will work with current occupants of the fully leased property.
“We will be working with current occupants to figure out a plan for a smooth transition over time,” she said.
Currently situated on this property is longtime dentist office Totem Lake Dentistry. There are no relocation plans in place yet, an office spokesperson said.