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Dickinson Hussman to study changes for No. 1 engine house


Staff Reporter

The Mehlville Fire Protection District Board of Directors recently voted to engage Dickinson Hussman Architects to review design changes for the district's No. 1 engine house, 7409 S. Lindbergh Blvd.

The decision was made by Chairman Tom O'Driscoll and Treasurer Dan Otto-line Sr. during a June 30 closed session.

The two voted to hire Dickinson Hussman for a cost not to exceed $9,350.

O'Driscoll participated in the meeting via telephone from his bed at St. Louis University Hospital where he is recovering from an April 27 traffic accident. The board's third seat has been vacant since April 29 when former fire chief and board member Joseph Gaterman lost his battle with cancer.

The No. 1 house is near the intersection of Lindbergh Boulevard and Lemay Ferry Road and district officials are planning for changes proposed for the intersection by the Missouri Department of Transportation.

The Department of Transportation is proposing to construct dual left-turn lanes and dedicated right-turn lanes at all approaches of the Lindbergh and Lemay Ferry intersection to improve traffic flow.

Access to and from local businesses will be revised orpossibly restricted as a result of the changes. Construction for the $2.25 million project is scheduled to begin next spring.

Mehlville Fire Protection District Chief Ray Haddock told the Call that Dickinson Hussman Architects would research and develop cost figures and recommendations for the district's No. 1 house. The first step is to look at the type of landand locations availablefor a nearby move, Haddock said, noting Mehlville officials have looked at several locations, but have not contacted anyone about them yet.

"Our priority is to see what the state is able to work with on this," Haddock said. "Everything is in negotiations."

The board will make the final decision on purchasing property after the reviews are complete, he said.

"It's a little different when you're working with public entities as compared to businesses because we all have the public interest involved," Haddock remarked.

The board chose Dickinson Hussman to review the design changes for No. 1 house because the firm did a very good job for the district with respect to the No. 5 house and administration building, Haddock said.

Because the contract for professional work was less than $10,000, the district did not have to seek bids for the work.

"There was no reason not to use them," Haddock said.

Dwight Dickinson of Dickinson Hussman Architects told the Call that he could not discuss the details of the firm's contract because it was a closed session matter for the fire district.

Department of Transportation officials say the Lindbergh Boulevard and Lemay Ferry Road intersection cannot handle the large amounts of vehicles traveling through the area. The single left-turn lanes and single shared through, right-turn lanes in the intersection, and the increased congestion have contributed to frequent accidents, especially rear-end collisions, according to the department.

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