HLM, a leading design and architecture company with studios in Belfast, has completed works for Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue (NIFRS) on a ‘purpose built’ Service Support Centre, at Boucher Crescent, Belfast.
The doors have opened on the £8.2m million capital project, combining the existing workshops at Central Fire Station, transport workshops and stores at NIFRS Headquarters in Lisburn and the previous equipment workshops at Boucher Crescent.
HLM was tasked with creating the concept design, bringing key operational support staff and services into one building to deliver real business improvement. The design solution ensured flexibility and affordability throughout.
The Service Support Centre will be the hub for the maintenance, servicing and repair of HGV vehicles, fire appliances and operational equipment. Functions also include specialist life safety equipment testing, repair and certification. The facilities contain a 16-bay vehicle workshop, parking, stores, clean workshop areas, small equipment service areas, equipment tests areas and office space.
HLM worked closely with NIFRS’ Head of Fleet, Engineering & Supplies to ensure that the building is fully operational for users. This allowed HLM to understand the complete processes a vehicle or element of equipment would move through when it enters the building to ensure maximum efficiency. The team used this opportunity to fully modernise existing functions, creating a building that meets the changing nature of a fire service.
Steven Lennon, Head of Emergency Service at HLM, said: “The new NIFRS Service Support Centre has been a rewarding and inspiring experience for the team at HLM. The project provided us with the opportunity to create a building within the Emergency Services sector that is of high quality and flexible for the future.
“Our core focus is always the end users of the building and their work flows, taking an operational-lead design solution. We allowed the end users to test the building at every stage, this approach to the complex building instilled confidence in the team and users, successfully creating a modern, inspiring work environment with a strong NIFRS brand aesthetic.”
Jemma Lowry, Business Development Manager, Lowry Building & Civil Engineering, said, “It has been fantastic for local companies to come together to create such a significant hub, not just for Belfast, but for Northern Ireland. Bringing HLM’s concept design to life through our construction works, we adhered to the very highest standards of quality control throughout all stages of the construction and fit-out process to create a bespoke, contemporary and innovative building.”
HLM’s Emergency Service design experience has been steadily growing over the past ten years. To date, the company has assisted four fire authorities with the design of over twelve stations. The company has also completed two fire service headquarters, both with regional control centres and two detailed training facilities ranging from USAR to live fire facility.
For more information please visit: hlmarchitects.com