By: Follow South Jersey Staff
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — The National Park Service has awarded a $500,000 African American Civil Rights grant towards the preservation of Atlantic City Fire Station 2, located at the corner of Indiana and Baltic Avenues, the city has announced.
“I’ve been committed to investing in our Fire Department since day one,” Mayor Marty Small, Sr. said in a press release from the city. “I’m the first Mayor in over a decade to do so, and now with the help of these grants we can continue to work to fix problems overlooked in previous administrations.”
The grant is in addition to the $750,000 grant that was awarded by the New Jersey Historic Trust earlier this year.
The African American Civil Rights grant is provided by the Historic Preservation Fund, as administered by the National Park Service, Department of Interior. Rutala Associates, the City’s Grant Consultant, secured both grants.
“The African American Civil Rights grants are critical to helping preserve and interpret a more comprehensive narrative of the people, places, and events associated with African American Civil Rights movement,” National Parks Service Director Chuck Sams said.
Fire Station 2 is a key resource in the Northside Institutional Historic District, whichretains a relatively high degree of integrity of location, association, feeling, design, materials, and workmanship to convey its significance as a rare concentration of institutional buildings designed in a variety of architectural revival styles within the city’s historic African American neighborhood.
The major goal of the first phase of this project is to preserve and stabilize the 100-year-old station’s building envelope. Once the building is protected, the second and third phases will rehabilitate the interior to allow Fire Station 2 to continue its mission as a functioning 21st century firehouse and Northside community fixture.
The building requires exterior work because of water infiltration that has cracked and spalled the extensive poured-in-place concrete used for foundation walls, floor slabs and to encase steel columns and beams. All three roofs require replacement, the exterior masonry must be repointed, and wall flashing must be replaced, both to fix earlier non-historic repairs and to protect from further water infiltration.
According to city officials, the firehouse is significant architecturally, with a two-story base and a prominent tower rising four additional floors in the Romanesque Revival style in early 20th century. The structure was designed to accommodate horse-drawn fire engines and the original stable building remains on the property.
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