KENNEWICK, Wash.- Kennewick City Council members voted unanimously Tuesday to expand the city's fire department.
The city will now move forward with purchasing property off of W. 10th Avenue.
Kennewick's Fire Chief Neil Hines says the southwest area of the city averages a four minute response time for emergency services and five for fires. He says that a new fire station will help improve those times.
Kennewick Mayor Steve Young says the property's location is in a premium spot and will better serve the southwest side of the city, but there was concern from near by neighbors about having a station in a residential area.
"Putting fire stations inside of a residential area really doesn't cause any problems. In fact, insurance costs go down for those living around the fire station. Secondly, they are good neighbors," said Young.
However, Young says the property they are buying is not large enough to start building a fire station and they will need to buy another piece of property next to it in the future.
He says they're thinking of having an emergency crew work out of the house that's already there to keep costs down in the meantime.
Young says it could be three or four years before they start building the new fire station.
The City of Kennewick also voted on approving the names sent to the council by the Regional Public Facilities District for the Pro and Con committee during their meeting.
The Pro and Con committee will write their respective opinions for the proposed ballot measure.