An early gift from Santa is always warmly welcomed — especially when it’s the kind that benefits an entire community.
The firefighters of Harris County Emergency Service District No. 48 (ESD 48) certainly know the feeling. On Saturday, December 19 at 10am ESD 48 will open a new transitory fire station near Highway 99 and Interstate 10 (23520 Kingsland Blvd and Cobia Dr.) that greatly improves its emergency response capabilities in the West Houston-Katy area.
Fire Chief Jeff Hevey said, “the District eventually will build a long-term facility in the area, but the new transitory station provides immediate improvement for emergency response time.” Battalion Chief Les Fulgham, who spearheaded efforts to open the new fire station, says the new site is great progress for the departments efforts to enhance service and response times in the western portion of ESD 48’s service area. “Given the nature and intensity of our work, being able to operate from a better location with quick access to both highways is a great advantage,” Fulgham said.
ESD 48 originally sought a portable fire station on an empty lot owned by Jacob White Construction. Jacob White President Jeff Mickler, whose father was a firefighter, was eager to help and enthusiastically responded. Mickler offered to build a transitory station that ESD 48 could lease while a new station was being built. Mickler would also install electricity and a fully-equipped water supply and sewage system — something not common in most transitory stations.
ESD 48 officials embraced the idea due to the company’s good reputation in the Katy. Jacob White Construction is already known for constructing high-performance buildings in the Katy area — the Katy Medical Plaza and the Kingsland Medical Office Building. Both those buildings meet LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certification requirements.
“I’m just happy to be able to provide a location for ESD 48 that will allow these dedicated people to improve their capacity to handle the demanding task of keeping this growing community safe,” Mickler says.
ESD 48 President and Commissioner Marshall Kramer said the District and the West Houston-Katy community both benefit greatly from Mickler’s willingness to offer a deal that’s actually better than what ESD 48 originally anticipated.