A Florissant real estate development at 1475 Carla Drive that has been in limbo for eight years has found a vibrant new use as a training site for first responders.
Members of the Florissant Fire Protection District, Black Jack Fire Protection District and Florissant Police Department are using the formerly derelict structure that was part of the Fleurissant Parc Place development to train first responders for real-life situations.
Greg Raftery, secretary to the president of the International Painters and Allied Trades Union, has coordinated with Florissant resident and community supporter Rick Phillips of All-American Painting Contractors to provide union painters. They will be spray painting more than 200 gallons of paint on the exterior of the three-story complex.
Steve Goldenberg and Milton Goldenberg of Golden Management, owners of the property, have generously agreed to allow the use of the building to first responders and also are donating the paint. Appropriate signage to identify the purpose of the site also is being donated.
Senator Emeritus Tim Green, governmental affairs director of the Electrical Connection for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1, is securing high-lift platforms. KB Electric Company, another community supporter from Florissant, is supplying and installing security lighting for the building. Chuck Barcom, owner of Meridian Waste Management, is donating use of a construction dumpster for use by workers.
Use of the building by first responders has enabled the City of Florissant to solve a problem that has been a source of annoyance for years both for City administrators and for residents in nearby homes and apartments.
While the three-story building is structurally sound, the Florissant Valley Fire Protection District and Black Jack Fire Protection District are at work removing windows and doors and replacing them with painted plywood to protect the building from the weather and unauthorized personnel. They also are cleaning out the inside of the structure. Even with the unsightly look of the building, it has remained structurally solid and the interior has remained in good shape.
“We are delighted that Golden Management has generously agreed to allow first responders to use this location as their First Responders Training Center,” said Florissant Mayor Thomas P. Schneider. “The use of this building by first responders from the Florissant Fire Protection District, Black Jack Fire Protection District and Florissant Police Department is an excellent and very important utilization for the facility. It also contributes to the safety of our residents and those throughout North County.”
Mayor Schneider would like to thank Florissant Economic Development Director Bob Russell for coordinating all aspects of this project with the first responders, generous sponsors, union trade workers and companies in finding a valuable use for this dormant structure.
Founded in 1786, Florissant is the largest city in St. Louis County, with a population of more than 52,000 residents.