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Mayor announces $750K grant to preserve ‘historic’ Atlantic City fire station

An Atlantic City fire station about to turn 100 got an early birthday this week.
The Marvin E. Beatty Jr. Memorial Fire Station has been recommended for a $750,000 preservation grant from the New Jersey Historic Trust to preserve the fire house at Indiana and Baltic avenues.
“This is the largest grant possible,” Mayor Marty Small said at an announcement Tuesday.
The grant recommendation, which has been approved by the New Jersey Historic Trust Board, will be presented to the Garden State Preservation Trust at its next meeting and requires a legislative appropriations bill and the governor’s approval before funds are made available to the recipient.
The city will then match the grant, putting a total of $1.5 million toward the preservation efforts.
“This building has a lot of history and is extremely significant to the fire service” Atlantic City Fire Chief Scott Evans said. “The building currently houses the Water Rescue Unit, Special Operations Unit and the Training Division, along with Engine 2 and Rescue 1. I’m excited to work on the rehabilitation and waterproofing of this station.”
The project plans would not require the companies to relocate while the work is done, Evans told BreakingAC.
“We’re excited to work with the New Jersey Historic Trust,” Small said. “This grant will provide the funding needed for the building envelope and structural rehabilitation of this historic building.”
“Grants through New Jersey Historic Preservation Fund help applicants honor, preserve and restore irreplaceable landmarks, which serve as a voice for historic preservation in New Jersey,” said Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver.
The move had a special significance for Atlantic City Preservation Commission Vice President Sonny Ireland, who is a retired city firefighter.
He worked out of the house, he said Tuesday.
The fire house was originally designed to accommodate horse-drawn fire engines. The original stable building remains on the property.
During the announcement of the grant, Small also announced that Chief Evans was awarded the Merit of Excellence Award for Community Service by Atlantic City Electric.
Evans, who also serves as the city’s emergency management coordinator, thanked his department who “makes me look good everyday.”

The Atlantic City Preservation Commission was established to promote historic preservation in the city. There are currently eight sites in the city on the state’s Register of Historic Places, with 24 other buildings deemed eligible for inclusion.
The city’s Master Plan lists an additional 30 sites to be considered in the future. 
Commission members include Chairperson Carol Ruffu, president of the Chelsea Neighborhood Association; Ireland, a member of the Ducktown Community Development Corporation; Tom Sykes, a local architect; Heather Halpin Perez, librarian and university archivist at Stockton University; Anthony Vraim, Atlantic City Zoning Board member; Joyce Hagen, director of the Atlantic City Arts Foundation; Jean Muchanic, director of the Absecon Lighthouse; Ralph Hunter, president of the African American Heritage Museum, and Libby Wells, president of the Frist Ward Civic Association.

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