New Fire Station Building

Front view of the proposed design for the new Raquette Lake Fire Station

The Raquette Lake Fire Department’s road to construction of a new Fire Station has been a long one. For almost a decade, the RLFD has recognized that the limits of the current building and called for replacement with a new, modern building that can provide safety, security and a facility that meets the needs of the Raquette Lake community.

When the former Spoon – South Bay Tavern property became available, the members of the RLFD voted to negotiate with the owner about purchasing the four acre property.  The RLFD took possession in early May 2015. Members and volunteers worked extensively to clear the property during that year. A Building Committee was appointed and set to the task of coming up with a design. Fundamental decisions of

  • building location
  • building requirements
  • materials
  • design elements

were discussed. A number of preliminary designs were produced and shared with the RLFD members. Progress was slow at times, as questions of

  • NYS Building Codes
  • Labor Law
  • Federal Loan requirements
  • APA considerations

were settled. Additional considerations such as

  • IRS tax exemption
  • deed restrictions
  • successful vote resolving the Township 40 issue (clear land title)

were resolved and the project continued to move forward. Surveys of the property lines were initiated and extensive testing of the soil was undertaken. Stormwater management and septic system design and location has presented itself as a major issue. We have submitted an application with the required documentation to the APA – Adirondack Park Agency and we are progressing through these stages with positive expectations.  In addition to our Building Committie, a highly qualified team has been assembled for this project, including Construction Management (by Raquette Lake property owner Dave Kleps) and Structural Engineering by (Wayne Beckingham).

As expected the most significant challenge has been funding. Many years of past RLFD fundraising have given us a head start. Recent new fundraising efforts have been notable. Many generous individual contributions have been received and are much appreciated. Early on, we spent a significant amount of time researching grant opportunities,  however, the criteria and requirements did not meet the needs of our community or desired direction. Currently, we intend to use a USDA Rural Developmental Loan with low interest rates for the portion of the project we are unable to fundraise.

As we celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Raquette Lake Fire Department we look forward to many decades in our new Fire Station which we ambitiously hope to break ground in July 2022