Sunday, September 27, 2020
Sept. 27, 2020

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Ridgefield fire station for sale

Price of $849,900 not expected to increase despite lots of interest

By , Columbian Assistant Metro Editor

An old fire station in downtown Ridgefield is for sale, and its listing agent Scott Combs said that everybody has an idea of what it could be renovated into.

“A brewery, a taproom or an Airbnb,” said Combs. “People love it.”

Combs, who listed the Fire Station 24 building for sale on Tuesday, said that he has six interested parties on the property, at 117 N. Third Ave., Ridgefield. Its listed price is $849,900, and he doesn’t expect the price to go up despite all the interest in the odd space.

The two-story, 4,130-square-foot building is zoned mixed-use commercial and residential living, Combs said. The upstairs holds conference rooms, a kitchen and bathrooms. The downstairs is a large concrete-floored garage that housed fire engines, he said.

Another unusual feature of the building: Verizon leased space on the top of the building for antennas and boxes for $15,000 a year, Combs said.

“It’s a good deal because it doesn’t affect the building,” he said.

The lease for the antennas expires next year, and Verizon has an option to lease it for another four years, Combs said.

Alas, there’s no fire pole in the building for people to slide down, and all the fire-station signage has been removed from the building, Combs said.

Clark County Fire & Rescue, the owner of the building, had a board of commissioners meeting on Thursday, and commissioners hadn’t received any formal offers as of then, said Dan Yager, administrative service division chief for Clark County Fire & Rescue.

The commissioners will decide which offer to take, and Yager said he’s not sure if commissioners will consider raising their price with all the increased interest in the property.

“There’s an incredible amount of interest from businesses,” he said. “An absolutely incredible amount of phone calls we’ve had.”

Clark County Fire & Rescue is constructing a new station at 3215 S. Hillhurst Road in Ridgefield, but it won’t be ready for a while, said Yager, and it may need financial help from a voter-approved bond that could be on the horizon.

Yager said that the department moved out of the building because it was so small that fire engines couldn’t fit in the garage. The building also didn’t meet safety standards; it lacked an overhead sprinkler system and couldn’t withstand a major earthquake, Yager said.

“The station is just old,” he said. “The engines that are built today won’t fit in there today. They’re too tall.”

The building was built around 1947, although there’s no known record of when, Yager said.

Meanwhile, the fire crew moved into the county’s administrative headquarters at 911 N. 65th Ave., Ridgefield.

Clark County Fire and Rescue Commissioner Larry Bartel said the building would host Santa Claus every year on Christmas Eve, a tradition that stretches back to when he was a kid in the 1950s and beyond that.

“Santa would arrive on the fire truck,” Bartel said. “There would be coffee, doughnuts and cookies. There was a special stage for Santa, and all the kids would come up and sit on his lap,” he said.

Hundreds of people would show up for it every year, he said.

Yager said that having a downtown fire station had its perk of drawing passersby.

“It was really nice to have a fire station downtown,” said Yager. “People would walk by to stop and talk constantly. Being downtown has always been wonderful.”