A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the county’s first fire and emergency services training facility is scheduled Dec. 10 at 12:30 p.m., and the community is invited to join public safety officials for an open house, demonstrations and refreshments.
Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services spokesman Tim Cavender said the new “state-of-the-art” facility, featuring a multi-level burn building, a four-story training tower and simulated fire station, will help to enhance the county’s service to residents, and save time and money.
“In the past, in order for us to train our firefighters, like we will here at the new training center locally, they had to go to the Georgia Public Safety training center in Forsyth,” Cavender said. “Because it’s so close to us, it’s something that our firefighters can go to more often, instead of having to select periods of time to drive down to Forsyth. They have the ability to train at a facility where it is closer, and they can even train on their days off.”
One of the main reasons for building the training center in Cherokee was to help enhance the fire service for residents. Cavender said this facility will help keep firefighters up to date on training and new technology, some of which will be demonstrated at the opening event.
“They’re already training at the facility, as of a couple of weeks ago,” he said. “When we have the grand opening, we’re going to have firefighters there on the scene to show what is available at the center now in order for them to train.”
Cavender said planning for the training center started in 2011, and construction began last October, which took more than a year to complete.
The second phase of construction is expected to be completed in about six months and includes additions of an administration building and classrooms.
The training center is at 3985 Holly Springs Parkway in Holly Springs and sits on 14.5 acres that was formerly Pikes Nursery property.
The facility was designed by Pond and Company and constructed by Cablik Enterprises, and the $5 million price tag for the training center was funded by Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, Cavender said.