Chicago Fire Department and Public Building Commission Celebrate Opening of the New Engine Company 16

New Facility Consolidates Firehouse, Southside Ambulance Services and Hazardous Materials Response Officers/Administrative Offices for Greater Operating Efficiency

Mimi Simon, Public Building Commission, (312) 744-9277
Larry Langford, Chicago Fire Department, (312) 745-4213

CHICAGO – Chicago Fire Department (CFD), the Public Building Commission of Chicago (PBC) and local officials today celebrated the opening of the new Engine Company 16, located at 53 E. Pershing Road in the city’s Bronzeville neighborhood.

The opening of Engine Company 16 allows CFD to retire both the old Engine Company 16 firehouse and the old firehouse at 54th and Wabash that currently houses the Southside ambulance administrative offices. This office along with quarters for the Assistant Deputy Chief of Paramedics for the Southside will be relocated to the new Engine Company 16.

The new facility will also be home to the CFD Hazardous Materials response officers and administrative section.  Hazardous materials vehicles have been relocated from the north side to a more centralized Southside location with improved access to the expressway system and lakefront for better citywide response. Consolidating all of these services into one building will allow for greater coordination within CFD and lower operating costs.

Engine Company 16 was funded in part by a Fire Station Construction Grant were derived from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.  This competitive grant program is administered by the US Department of Homeland Security. The Chicago Fire Department received $4.8 million toward the construction of Engine 16, which was one of the largest dollar amounts awarded to a single fire department.

The new 26,063-square-foot firehouse provides an upgraded facility to house modern firefighting apparatus, including an apparatus bay that provides the ingress and egress necessary to safely maneuver modern equipment, which ultimately improves response time and efficiency.  A total of five emergency response vehicles will be housed in the new facility, whereas the old Engine Company 16 held two vehicles in a very tight configuration.

Also included in the facility are a hose tower, watch tower, officer’s quarters, sleeping quarters for 16 firefighters, a staff training/educational room, locker rooms and a full service kitchen and dining room.

Exterior amenities include a communications tower, a green and reflective roof, parking, native and adaptive landscaped site development, permeable paving and a aggressive stormwater management.

Design and construction of the new firehouse was managed by the Public Building Commission of Chicago in partnership with the Chicago Fire Department and the City Department of Fleet and Facility Management.

The Public Building Commission of Chicago manages construction and renovation projects for the City of Chicago and its sister agencies. Mayor Rahm Emanuel serves as the PBC’s chairman. Erin Lavin Cabonargi serves as the Executive Director of the PBC.  Additional information about the PBC and its projects can be found at  You can also follow the Public Building Commission of Chicago on Twitter: @PBCChi and on Facebook: