After two years of planning a full remodel, GEO-DC has decided to demolish the existing structure of its eventual Discovery Center and rebuild it from scratch. The decision came after news that the structure was worse off than originally anticipated: Much of it was not to code, and asbestos was found.
Not wanting the building to go to waste, however, GEO-DC contacted Sister Bay/Liberty Grove Fire Chief Chris Hecht to ask whether the department could use the building for firefighting training. The answer was a resounding “Yes!”
GEO-DC was also in touch with Habitat for Humanity to see whether the organization could repurpose anything from the building prior to the fire department’s training. Since then, Habitat has been removing paneling, flooring, doors, windows, light fixtures, shelving, a toilet, a sink – and even the EXIT sign – to be repurposed elsewhere in the community.
“The Sister Bay and Liberty Grove Fire Department has been very fortunate to have received the donation of the GEO-DC building,” Hecht said. The fire department has had limited accessibility to surplus structures to use for training, and this building will provide a unique opportunity for hands-on training. Members of the department will be using the building for real-world training, including live fire training that will provide hands-on experience in flow-path control, ventilation, a variety of search-and-rescue techniques, and fire suppression.”