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Erie City Council eyes former Miller Brothers property for new public safety facility

By Chelsea Swift,


The site of a former long-time power equipment business could soon be purchased by the City of Erie.

The City of Erie hopes to purchase the former Miller Brothers Power Equipment property located in the 2100 block of State Street.

Local leaders have a vision for the site to house a new public safety facility for the city’s Public Works, police and fire departments.

The city’s assistant fire chief said their current Marsh Street facility is too small and too old.

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“The ceiling height is low, and right now, structurally the floor is giving away and we were restricted on where we can go. Inside our maintenance facility is where we can put the fire trucks because of structural issues,” said Assistant Chief Leonard Trott, City of Erie Fire Department.

On Wednesday, June 7, Erie City Council will vote on an ordinance appropriating $2.8 million in American Rescue Plan funds to purchase the former Miller Brothers Property. The upgrades will cost an estimated $30 million.

Some say this option beats the alternative.

“I think it’s a good idea because I don’t know where we’re going to find a building of that size unless we build one, and that’s really expensive,” Trott added.

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Local officials said this vote is a long time coming. They added about a year ago, the city commissioned an architectural study of the property.

“There was quite an extensive study done as far as how much room was there and if it would meet our needs, and it was very favorable,” said Trott.

“This is an excellent way to spend American Rescue Plan dollars. This is something that’ll last beyond the terms of that budget. The price per square foot is less than anything on the market, and I think it can suit our needs well with the buildout that’s anticipated,” said Chuck Nelson, president of Erie City Council.

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