The long-awaited Truro Township fire station on East Main Street is a step closer to completion.

The township on Sept. 6 announced Columbus-based Setterlin Building Co. has been selected as the project's new general contractor.

Construction on the 16,471-square-foot station 161 mostly had been stalled since Palmetto Construction LLC voluntarily defaulted in February.

In a Feb. 6 letter, Palmetto said it was unable to fulfill its contract to complete the $3.9 million project but did not say why.

The Ohio Farmers Insurance Co./Westfield Group, the project's surety bonding company, took over for Palmetto in mid-February, retaining many of the original subcontractors hired by Palmetto, township officials said.

According to the Ohio Department of Insurance, a surety bond "provides peace of mind to the parties requiring the bond that if a project can't be completed, the monies will be available to pay for completion."

Setterlin was selected by Ohio Farmers Insurance Co./Westfield Group.

"Any monies above and beyond that it will take to build that building, the bonding company picks up, so we're still within budget on this project," said fire Chief Jeff Sharps.

The fire station was scheduled to open early this year but first was delayed by a rainy spring before Palmetto's default.

The station now is expected to open in 2020, Sharps said.

Much of the major structural work is complete but concrete, roofing and inside items like plumbing and the HVAC system still need to be finished, Sharps said.

"They're just in the beginning stages of the interior for the station so that's where the bulk of the job," he said. "They're going to finish the roof within the next couple of weeks."

The new fire house is being built at 6900 E. Main St., on the site of the former station. Once complete, it will have three bays and living quarters for up to 11 firefighters per shift, a training room and more than 700 square feet of administrative offices. It was made possible by a 2.5-mill levy approved in 2016.

The department has been operating out of a single building -- station 162 on East Livingston Avenue -- since the old fire house was demolished in 2017.

"Our firefighters have been wonderful; we thought initially it was going to be a 12-month period that they would be in one station and now it's going to be about 24 months," Sharps said. The new station is "a long time coming."

The department serves the township, city of Reynoldsburg and village of Brice and responded to 7,396 calls for service in 2018.

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