11 September, 1992
Princeton fire company set for move
By John P. McAlpin
Members of Mercer Engine Co. No. 3 are expected to begin moving the contents of the Chambers Street firehouse to the fire company’s $2 million new home on Witherspoon Street this weekend. The move comes as workers complete a “lengthy” checklist of needed improvements and additions to the project, said Princeton Borough Administrator Thomas Shannon.
“Every little-bitty thing you can see is listed. It’s pretty lengthy, many pages. but that’s not unusual in a building project of this size.” said Mr. Shannon.
“The contractor is doing a great deal of work on the punch list to get it completed,” he said.
“The fire company’s possessions are all packed up and ready for the move, which is going to be no small feat,” Mr. Shannon said. “That move will take the better part of October, probably several weeks.”
Firefighters will meet Friday night to discuss the specifics of the move and to set a date when formal operations will be switched over to the Witherspoon Street building, Mr. Shannon said.
“They will be operating (the Chambers Street building) as a firehouse up until a certain instance and then switch over to the new building,” Mr. Shannon said.
Once the move is completed, the borough plans to auction the Chambers Street building, he said.
The borough is responsible for administering the finances of the three fire companies that serve both the borough and Princeton Town-ship. Earlier this month, the borough agreed to hire the realty firm of Coldwell Banker Schlott to market and auction the Chambers Street building.
Mr. Shannon said the property has been listed and advertised in national publications.
The town has set “a tentative” auction date of Oct. 29, Mr. Shannon said.
Borough officials said they plan to get the highest price possible for the building. The money from the sale would then be used to offset the cost of the new construction.
Borough Council recently changed zoning regulations that would make it easier for potential buyers to convert the Chambers Street firehouse into a restaurant.
“Most of the experts feel that probably a restaurant use is the best use of the property,” Mr. Shannon said.
Borough Council will request that the highest bidder put up “a substantial deposit,” the administrator said.
The council also has the right to refuse any bid, Mr. Shannon said.