The Bayonne Fire Department held a ceremony for the renovated 57th Street Fire Station and the new fire engine that will be stationed there. The building is located at 57th Street and Avenue B.
Renovations included new roofing, substantial interior renovations and a new driveway and sidewalks. The project also included repointing the building’s exterior brick face. The old, sagging ground-level floors, which were in danger of collapsing, were replaced with stronger flooring, in order to bear the Bayonne Fire Department’s heavy vehicles more securely.
The department also purchased a new fire engine, Engine 6, to replace an aging 2001 model. Engine 6, which was made by the Pierce Manufacturing Company, is an Enforcer model, built according to the Fire Department’s specifications.
According to Fire Chief Keith Weaver, the fire station renovations took three years from the planning stage to the completion of construction. Chief Weaver said that the process for obtaining the new Engine 6 took 17 months from specifications until delivery.
He thanked Mayor Jimmy Davis, the Bayonne City Council Members, and Public Safety Director Robert Kubert for supporting the building renovations and the purchase of the new fire engine.
Consulting and Municipal Engineers (CME) performed the engineering work for the fire station renovations. Engineers Robert Russo and Darren Mazzei worked on the renovations for the building, which dates from 1928. Construction Engineer Jerry Dean of CME performed inspections of the work throughout the renovations.
Chief Weaver credited Deputy Chief Bill Bartos and Fire Captains David Brown and John Andreychak for keeping track of the details related to the building renovations and the new fire engine.
Deputy Chief Bartos said, “Chief Weaver has our back,” and thanked Mayor Davis and the city council for standing behind the fire department “one hundred percent.”
At the Dec. 9 ceremony, Mayor Davis thanked the Fire Department for getting the work done on the fire station now, so that there would be “no kicking the cans down the road.” He stressed the importance of installing stronger flooring, in order to prevent fire vehicles from falling into the basement.
City Council President Sharon Ashe-Nadrowski said that the renovated fire station and the new engine were needed for “revitalizing and growing Bayonne.” She said that it was important to have “the infrastructure and public safety equipment” that are up to date.
Third Ward Council Member Gary La Pelusa said that the renovated fire house and new engine are “all about protection.” He said that “without a proper fire house and equipment,” the firefighters “could not do their job.”
Father John Doherty, former pastor of St. Andrew’s Church; Father John Fencik, pastor of St. Mary’s Orthodox Church; and Rev. Dorothy Patterson, pastor of the Wallace Temple Church offered blessings at the ceremony for the renovated building and new fire engine. The elected officials joined the department leadership in unveiling a new plaque to mark the building renovations.
In addition to those already mentioned, among those attending the event were Public Works Director Tom Cotter, Police Chief Robert Geisler, former Deputy Police Chief Charles Ryan, and former Deputy Fire Chief John Ryan. During his three-decade-long fire department career, John Ryan was stationed for a time at the 57th Street fire house.