Central Park Building protected by new fire alarm system

The Central Park Building is more protected than ever now that a new digital fire alarm system has been installed.

Fire Chief Keith Stecko talks about fire safety at a fire drill following the installation of a new fire alarm system at the Central Park Building.

Fire Chief Keith Stecko talks about fire safety at a fire drill following the installation of a new fire alarm system at the Central Park Building.

The Central Park Building is more protected than ever now that a new digital fire alarm system has been installed.

The Central Park Building Society, at their last AGM, were alerted to a need to upgrade their alarm system. As it was, their system was analog, which meant that even though the alarm in the building would go off, it wouldn’t automatically call the fire department, which operates digitally now.

Of course even though the fire department is right next door to the building, by the time anyone outside of the building becomes aware of a blaze it would be too late.

John Van Veen was contacted to create a design to make the building more fire safe and the plan eventually finalized to having a smoke detector in each of the building’s 42 rooms.

Strobe lights were also installed in some rooms. Due to the loud noise in some spaces, the light provides an additional reminder if something’s wrong.

“There’s now a smoke detector in every room within the whole building,” said Allan Cormier, the vice president of the Central Park Building Society.

Financial support for the project was provided by four local organizations which together handed over $16,000 of the $16,500 price tag. Those four are the Wetzin’kwa Community Forest, the Lions Club, the Rotary Club and the B.V. Credit Union.

“The positive value of this building cannot be emphasized enough,” said Cormier. “It is the only heritage building on Highway 16 and its use as a cultural hub of Smithers demonstrates the quality-of-life features that will draw new residents and investments to Smithers.”

The 7,700 square-foot building is used extensively. The museum and art gallery use up the bottom floor and the remainder of the building is used by a dance studio, the genealogical society and various music studios on the third floor.

In a past life the building was used as the community’s court house.