Thursday, December 2, 2021

Joint fire training facility coming to southern Denton County

The town of Flower Mound and cities of Highland Village and Lewisville have all approved an interlocal agreement for the design, construction, maintenance, operation and management of a joint fire training facility.

The Flower Mound Fire Department began discussions with the Lewisville Fire Department in 2019 about a partnership to rebuild the Lewisville Fire Training Center, which is no longer usable. Highland Village soon after joined the discussion, and they’ve come to an agreement to build and maintain the $5 million 9,000-square-foot facility, which will be built on the same property of the current Lewisville facility.

The plan includes rebuilding and improving the existing site and creating a multipurpose fire training complex, according to the town of Flower Mound. The proposed facility includes access to a drill tower and classrooms to effectively prepare for an “all hazards” approach to emergency response including but not limited to fire, disaster management, technical rescue, as well as complex medical scenarios.

During the Oct. 18 Flower Mound Town Council meeting, FMFD Division Chief Brandon Barth said the facility will be used for necessary fire training in a much better location. Currently, FMFD pays to use other training centers that are farther away and must schedule training dates up to a year in advance. Other departments in the region are also using joint training centers to share the costs.

The Lewisville City Council approved the agreement last month, while Highland Village City Council approved it Oct. 12 and Flower Mound Town Council approved it last week. The 20-year agreement states that Lewisville owns the facility, but the Flower Mound and Highland Village FDs are allowed to use it.

The costs for each municipality are based on the percentage of Texas Commission on Fire Protection firefighters on staff: Lewisville is responsible for 51.6% of the costs (about $2.6 million in the initial design and construction), Flower Mound is responsible for 40.6% (about $2 million initially), and Highland Village has 7.8% (about $386,000 initially). All of the cities’ budgets that were approved last month included funding for their portions of the project.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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