Franklin Co. Moving Ahead on New EMS Station

By MJ Kneiser, WLHR Radio, Lavonia

Work is expected to begin soon on the new Franklin County EMS station in Lavonia.

At last week’s Franklin County Commission meeting, Franklin County Manager Billy Morse told the board the staff is currently putting the project together to open for construction bids.

“Our plan is to advertise the project in November and December with a bid opening on December 20th,” Morse said. “We would submit the bids for opening and consideration to the commission on January 7th. If all goes well, construction would begin in February of 2013 and the project would be completed in May of 2013.”

Morse admitted it was an aggressive schedule and asked for the board’s input.

The new station will relocate the current Lavonia EMS staff from their location in a small, older concrete facility in downtown Lavonia to Gerrard Road in the Lavonia Industrial Park.

Franklin County Emergency Services Director Terry Harris said last month the new building will give his staff a more central location from which to answer calls.

“This will give us a lot better facility than we’re in now,” Harris said. “The building we’re in now is outdated. The new building will give us easy access to I-85, SR17 and the new hospital. So, it’s definitely going to be a plus.”

Morse said that is one reason why the county staff is moving forward so quickly with the new construction.

According to Morse, the new facility will offer more room and more room for future expansion.

“Our plans call for a building with two vehicle bays and four bedrooms, which would allow a second crew to be housed at the location, if needed in the future. The new building also calls for an attractive brick facade,” Morse explained.

Commissioner Clint Harper motioned to proceed with the construction and bidding plan as well as approve the brick façade, which he said would work well with the overall look of the industrial park.

The Franklin County Industrial Building Authority recently donated land for the new station on Gerrard Road to the county.