Featured image: 1922 Dodge, 1920 White, 1925 White and 1930 Sanford fire trucks at the Ipswich Central Street fire station.
The Public Safety Property Re-Use Working Group was recently created to provide community leaders and Ipswich residents with a variety of potential uses for the existing Police Station building and parcel located at 15 Elm Street and Fire Station building and parcel located at 55 Central Street, following the Fall 2021 Town vote approval of construction of a new combined Public Safety Building on Pineswamp Road. Potential uses of the buildings and parcels will be presented to the Select Board prior to the 2022 Fall Special Town Meeting. An additional objective is to find a new location for the community gardens presently at the site of the future Public Safety complex.
History of the Buildings
In the early 20th Century, the brick building at 15 Elm Street was constructed as an annex to the Old Town Hall. It was used as the Water and Electric Department office from 1937 until 1977 when the Electric Department moved to upper High St. Several years later the Police department moved in and finally had their own facility. The 100 year-old building is lacks the infrastructure considered essential for modern public safety buildings.
For decades, voters rejected replacement of the Town’s outdated public safety infrastructure. Construction of a new combined. Public Safety facility was approved at the October 16, 2021 Special Town Meeting and the Special Town Election on Tuesday, October 26, 2021.