Town hires contractor for new EMS station

— From Google Maps

Guilderland's new EMS station, which Supervisor Peter Barber says will be equal distance between the two current stations, is to be built near the town-owned golf course, with access to both routes 20 and 146.

GUILDERLAND — Guilderland’s third emergency station is one step closer to reality.

On July 12, the town board unanimously approved a bid from M.A. Schafer for $739,000 to build the shell of a building near the entrance to the town’s golf course on Route 20.

M.A. Schafer’s bid was significantly lower than the other two bids: MLB Construction bid $996,000 and Hoosick Valley contractors bid $1,160,000.

Supervisor Peter Barber said M.A. Schafer had built the town’s pool house at Tawasentha Park and gotten “rave reviews.”

“Given the craziness out there … we were pleasantly surprised,” he said, referring to inflation and supply-chain issues.

Most of the interior work will be done by town staff, Barber said.

The project will be funded largely by monies from the federal American Rescue Plan, Barber had said at the town board’s Feb. 1 meeting.

Currently, Guilderland Emergency Medical Services has a station in Westmere, off of Route 20, and a station on Carman Road.

At its Feb. 16 meeting, the board discussed a memo from Jay Tyler, Guilderland’s EMS director, who said that the town service now deploys three ambulances and one Advanced Life Support First Response vehicle from three locations — one of which is the Guilderland firehouse.

“The facility no longer meets our needs,” Tyler wrote of the firehouse, stating that EMS providers during the pandemic expanded their scope of practice to include vaccination and testing for COVID-19.

“The proposed EMS station would be an essential deployment site for homebound vaccinations and accommodate crew alteration related to POD events,” Tyler wrote of points of dispensing, meaning giving vaccinations from a station. 

“The proposed facility,” he went on, “would also serve as a shower and decontamination site for category pathogens.”

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