Warwick Buildings and Energy Committee members to make personal donations to support Fire Station project

  • Warwick Buildings and Energy Committee members have committed to donating from their own pockets to put toward the purchase of six triple pane windows for the Fire Station on Orange Road, pictured in November. Staff File Photo/Zack DeLuca

Staff Writer
Published: 2/5/2021 2:54:27 PM

WARWICK — Buildings and Energy Committee members have committed to donating around $480 from their own pockets to put toward the purchase of six triple pane windows for the Fire Station, making it an increasingly energy efficient building.

The Fire Station, off of Orange Road (Route 78), has seen developing design plans and gradual construction of an addition over the past few years. The project was originally headed up by the Warwick Firemen’s Association, an independent entity from the town, until Warwick took ownership of the building at the association’s request through an Annual Town Meeting vote, according to Town Coordinator David Young.

New metal roofing was installed over Labor Day weekend in September, and some exterior doors were installed in the fall. Buildings and Energy Committee members Steve and Janice Kurkoski said they are now looking to purchase triple pane windows quoted at roughly $80 apiece, totaling around $480 for six windows from Maki Building Centers’ Specialty Wholesale Supply in Gardner.

Steve Kurkoski said upgrading from double to triple pane windows will improve the building’s R-value insulation ratings by about 18 percent. According to energy.gov, an insulating material’s resistance to heat loss is measured using an R-value — the higher the R-value, the greater the material’s insulating effectiveness.

“Our five members are going to pitch in together to cover for the upgrade to triple pane windows,” Janice Kurkoski said. “We were all under the impression that triple pane was more expensive, by a lot. When we found out otherwise, we figured we should go for it.”

Buildings and Energy Committee members met last week and unanimously approved the recommendation to buy the triple pane windows, Steve Kurkoski reported during Monday night’s Selectboard meeting. The town aims to develop as close to a net-zero-energy Fire Station as possible through this purchase and further insulating efforts during the ongoing construction process.

The Kurkoskis encourage residents who wish to see the finished Fire Station use as little energy as possible to donate to the Warwick Firemen’s Association Building Fund. Checks can be mailed to Town Hall, 12 Athol Road, Warwick, MA 01378.

The new Fire Station was built in 2016, providing more space than the old station on Hastings Pond Road that was built in 1952. Since then, the Warwick Firemen’s Association embarked on building an addition, which will house a fully accessible bathroom, a communications room, a new office and a training room.

According to Fire Chief Joe Larson, some of the work on the new station has been funded using a payment the Fire Department received for completing training to prepare in the event that an emergency related to the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant were to occur.

“That money was donated and put into an account for the department to use for any future projects as a thank you for conducting the training,” Larson recalled.

According to Young, the account where the money was saved currently holds less than $40,000. In addition to these funds, former Fire Chief Ron Gates and department members held chicken barbecues, softball games and other fundraising events over the past 15 years to benefit the station.

During Monday’s meeting, Larson and Young said one of the Fire Department members, Joe Paul, had been leading the construction project but has since stepped back from this duty. Young emphasized the town’s appreciation for Paul’s contributions up to this point, but noted that now that it is a town-owned construction project, prevailing wage, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations, procurement standards and other legal parameters now apply.

While firefighters will be stepping back as “the worker bees,” Young said the town intends to involve Franklin County Technical School students moving forward, as it did when installing the Fire Station’s wiring.

Zack DeLuca can be reached at zdeluca@recorder.com or 413-930-4579.


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