“It’s time to get busy.”
Seymour Fire Chief Brad Lucas made that comment at the end of a city council meeting in November 2020 after proposing to build a new fire station to replace Fire Station 2.
The council was on board with the plan, and that vision started coming together after a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday afternoon. The ceremony celebrated the beginning of construction of the $5.75 million station on a 4-acre site at 1019 W. Second St., Seymour.
Seymour Fire Chief Brad Lucas speaks at a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of Fire Station 2 at 1019 W. Second St. on Tuesday.
Mitchell Banks | The Tribune
Lucas spoke at the ceremony and said he was “just elated” about the groundbreaking.
He gave a timeline for how the idea for building a fire station became a reality.
Around 10 years ago, Lucas said he was just starting as the station’s new fire chief and wanted to do something about Fire Station 2 at 500 W. Fifth St.
The main motivation behind replacing the station, built in 1967, was the department had outgrown it.
While plans were being put together, Lucas said the financing wasn’t quite there to build the new fire station since there were economic repercussions from the Great Recession that had started in late 2007.
In 2016, former Seymour Mayor Craig Luedeman started talking with Lucas about building a new fire station, and the fire chief said he started thinking it might become a reality after all.
Things got more serious, and Fishers-based RQAW Corp. started offering ideas for projects.
Lucas learned the fire station received the green light to be built when he was having dinner at El Nopal with his wife, Cindi, in 2019.
Branden Robbins from Reedy Financial Group happened to see Lucas at the restaurant and said, “Hey, chief, we’re going to build that firehouse.”
“And I’m like, ‘Where’d this come from?’” Lucas said. “I thought I was going to retire a little bit before now, but I went back and told Cindi, ‘I’m not going to retire. We’re going to build a firehouse.’”
In the time since the proposal went before the Seymour City Council, Lucas said there has been almost no downtime, and city Attorney Christina Engleking has been helpful in figuring out the legal workings of building a fire station.
“Fifty weeks later and we’re finally here,” Lucas said.
He thanked the many people involved in bringing the new fire station to life, including those from RQAW, the fire department, other city employees, his wife and present Mayor Matt Nicholson.
“I do want to give Brad a round of applause because he is the brains behind all of this,” Nicholson said. “He has worked his tail off to get us to this point, and he deserves a round of applause for that.”
With the creation of a new fire station, the department will add an assistant chief position and have room for a training officer and inspectors to work.
Seymour is issuing $9.9 million in bonds to pay for the construction of the new fire station, renovations to Fire Station 1 and renovations to Seymour City Hall. The city paid $403,000 to Premier Ag Co-op for the building site on Oct. 26.