Combining traditional design and modern functionality in fire stations
buildings of distinction
BY SIMON GONZALEZ
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANDREW SHERMAN
THE COLOR is so iconic it has its own name. Fire engine red.
Studies show that fire trucks painted lime yellow (aka “national safety yellow”) have greater
visibility and are involved in fewer accidents, but for traditionalists, only red will do.
Frank Blackley, Wilmington assistant fire chief of support services and the man in charge
of building new stations to replace outdated ones, is a traditionalist. He had a simple directive
when it came time to plan the city’s newest facility.
“Does it look like a fire station?” he says. “Does it have some of the old traditional looks to it?”
That nod to tradition informed most of the design decisions for the exterior of Station 3, the 14,500-square-foot
facility that was finished in October 2015.
Station 3, Wilmington’s newest, takes its design cues from the past but the equipment is decidedly more modern than
the horse-drawn wagons of old.
WBM september 2017
PHOTO COURTESY OF NEW HANOVER COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY