Design of Lafayette's newest fire station has begun at the corner of Settlers Trace and Beaullieu Drive for Lafayette's first environmentally responsible fire station. The initial design of Fire Station 15, designed by Chase Marshall Architects, calls for the station to be constructed of recycled building materials and will exceed the current energy code requirements.
Known for 13 fire stations among a wealth of other projects throughout Louisiana and the nation, Chase Marshall principal Jay Chase described the design as "a modern interpretation of how fire stations were built at the turn of the 20th century."
Like early fire station designs, this two-story project places eating, sleeping, and working areas on the upper floor, facilitating a smaller footprint than fire stations of the last several decades.
"It allowed us to work with a small, oddly shaped site that backs onto a coulee," explains Chase. "It meant that we were able to make use of a piece of land that didn't lend itself to anything. And to ensure privacy for the neighborhood on the opposite side of the coulee, we intentionally omitted windows along the back of the building and anticipate planting trees that grow above the fence line for visual appeal.
"The need for a fire station in this area of town came to a head in recent years because of the total loss of a number of homes to fire," Chase continued, "plus this additional fire station is important to Lafayette Parish. It helps keep our current fire rating, otherwise, all of our homeowner's insurance rates would go up.
"Although the structure will not be certified for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) because of budget constraints," Chase added, "we have made use of some interesting recycled materials and have maximized opportunities for energy efficiency through out the space."